Jim Murray says he’s "honoured" to be the newest member of the Assiniboine Community College board of governors.
Murray, who also serves as vice-chairperson on the Brandon School Division board of trustees, said he’s looking forward to settling into his new role.
"I’m going to have to find out what my role on the board is and I’m going to have to see how they operate as a board and figure out what I can contribute to the operation," he said. "I think it goes hand in hand with the work we’re doing in the Brandon School Division.
"We’ve always worked very well together, so I think this is just a natural fit."
Along with bringing 18 years of school board experience to the table, serving on both boards could help move things along when it comes to BSD students occupying empty space at ACC’s Victoria Avenue East campus.
"I think it would help having a voice in both those locations to make sure the information is flowing accurately back and forth," he said. "There’s always been great co-operation between ACC and Brandon School Division, so I think it’s going to be beneficial to both organizations."
Along with announcing his new position during Monday’s regular school board meeting, trustees also passed a motion to advance talks of the division’s plan to take advantage of empty spaces available at ACC.
The suggestion was brought forward by several community members at a public consultation meeting held almost a year ago and along with discussing it with Education Minister Nancy Allan, the division will also have to work closely with Advanced Education and Literacy Minister Erin Selby and Manitoba Infrastructure and Transportation before occupying the empty space.
School board chair Mark Sefton said he was glad the motion was approved and hopes the grade 7 and 8 industrial arts, home economics and band programs will be able to move into those available spaces soon.
"It’s exciting that it’s moving forward," Sefton said. "It’s so exciting for us to get the green light to go ahead and make a proposal because it means it’s one step closer and what it does for us of course is alleviate some of the pressures we’re having with enrolment.
"The province has empty space that could be used, which would then diminish some of the pressure that they are feeling from us and the community about building a new school and for our students it would be an exciting opportunity to have their shop and home ec and band in a location that is perhaps even better suited for it than what they have now."
But it’s unlikely everything will be in place for students to occupy the space this year, he said.
Meadows and Betty Gibson schools are also gearing up to move some of their students into the portable classrooms they received earlier this month. Although the portable classrooms are already equipped with their own heating and cooling systems, desks and other classroom materials still have to be moved in. Students can expect to be settling in to their new classrooms over the next couple of weeks, Sefton said.
"They are designed for the most part to stand alone but we want to make sure that they are connected to things like the school intercom system so that those students still feel like they’re apart of the school."
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition September 26, 2013