The Board of Trustees of Rocky View Schools (RVS) honoured three of its own Dec. 7. Former trustees Sylvia Eggerer, Bev LaPeare and Colleen Munro were recognized during the board’s regular meeting.
“Today we wanted to take the opportunity to celebrate the significant contributions that our three friends and former trustees have made…,” said Superintendent of Schools Greg Luterbach.
LaPeare was the longest serving trustee, having first been elected to represent Chestermere and area in 2004.
“Her dedication to public education and supporting students has been seen over and over and over again, whether that’s in schools – attending student council meetings – serving as vice chair (of the board), and serving on many board committees over the years,” said Ward 6 Trustee Fiona Gilbert. “Your legacy, what you left behind is still felt, not just in terms of Chestermere and area but right across RVS.”
Eggerer retired after spending 11 years on the board, serving students and parents in Airdrie. But her connection to RVS goes back much further as she used to teach in the division, eventually moving on to administrative roles.
“When I started as an Airdrie trustee four years ago, I started that term in awe of Sylvia because she was very well known and very well respected around Airdrie,” said Board Chair Todd Brand. “After serving with her for four years, I am still in awe of Sylvia and am fortunate to have learned a lot from her.”
Munro was first elected to represent Springbank and area in 2007 and served as board chair from 2013 until the election this October.
“Colleen Munro came to the RVS Board of Trustees already a community and an opinion leader in northwest Rocky View,” said Ward 4 Trustee Norma Lang. “RVS benefited from Colleen’s passion for strong governance and deep connection to her community as well as her sharp intellect.”
According to Lang, Munro’s ability to speak to the higher-ups at the Alberta government and lobby on behalf of the division is something that will be missed.
All three retiring trustees had words of wisdom to share with the newest members of the board.
“I hope all of you have taken the opportunity to get to know what your strengths are as trustees and how you personally operate – where you come from as a trustee and what brings you to public education and the desire to serve. Make that work for the next four years and hopefully continue the legacy of advocacy that we’ve started at RVS,” Munro said. “Make sure you always keep students at the centre of your decisions.”
LaPeare urged trustees to treasure the relationships they already have on the board and within the school division.
“Those relationships will get you through the tough times,” she said.
Eggerer said she often operated by an adage she had heard from consultant Leroy Sloan – “If you can’t say ‘no,’ don’t say ‘yes.’”
“Always keep that in the back of your mind…. You are the person who represents all of the children in our school division through their parents and, whatever you do, you are making choices for those children.”