News 1130

VSB joins Park Board, City of Vancouver in live streaming public meetings

Originally posted on News 1130 – Story By Marcella Bernardo

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Vancouver’s school board is making it easier for parents, students and staff to virtually monitor public meetings.

NPA trustee Lisa Dominato says starting in November, those meetings will be live streamed.

“The City of Vancouver has had live streaming and broadcasting of meetings for a number of years now. The Park Board adopted live streaming in 2015. I think it’s time. I heard from parents and other educators that they want the opportunity to be engaged, so I think it increases transparency and accountability.”

She adds this provides many parents who wish they could attend meetings in person much more flexibility.

“Especially when we’re talking about low-engagement, in terms of voter turnout for elections. I think this is another way of supporting our democratic process with engaging the public in our decision-making.”

Dominato, who is seeking a seat on Vancouver city council in the October 20th civic election, says a recording of each meeting will also be available for up to 180 days after the live broadcast.

She says there are no additional or ongoing costs for software, but some money has been spent on video and audio equipment needed to make the board and committee rooms ready for live streaming.

Mental Health support encouraged for BC students

“Less than a week before National Child and Youth Mental Health Day on May 7th, a Vancouver trustee hopes she can convince the provincial government to develop an early intervention strategy for all BC schools.

Lisa Dominato says more than 80,000 children between four and 17 years old have mental health issues.

“In many cases, they will turn to their peers for help or to some of the teaching staff within the schools, so I think it’s time to be looking at things a little bit more holistically. We have pockets of excellence and great things happening, but what I want to see is a strategy that really ensures there’s consistencies.”

Dominato, who chairs Vancouver’s non-profit Kettle Society which supports adults living with mental illness, also has unanimous support from the BC School Trustee Association to lobby Victoria for support.”

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