Three founding members of the advocacy group Surrey Students NOW will run for School Board Trustee in Surrey’s upcoming civic election. Running are Cindy Dalglish, Charlene Dobie, and Mary-Em Waddington. Cindy Dalglish is a stalwart advocate for education in Surrey and she holds all three levels of government accountable for the dire straits of education in Surrey. She currently works in post-secondary education and has experience using her Communications degree in the non-profit, government, and corporate sectors.
“Communication is key to good governance, and that communication needs to be across, all levels of government, and through the channel of parents, educators, support staff, and administrators,” says Dalglish. “It’s time to listen to all stakeholders to ensure, not most, but all students get what they need.”
Charlene Dobie served on the Surrey Board of Education from 2011 to 2014 where she spearheaded the First Nations land acknowledgement protocol and LGBTQ+ inclusion regulation. She has more than 20 years experience working as an Education Assistant and previously as an Early Childhood Educator.
“I am passionate about public education and believe education is the foundation of our community. Students are the future of our society, and we must give them opportunity to reach their full potential,” says Dobie. “Teachers, support staff, and administrators have become much more than educators, and we need to provide them with adequate support so that they can do the very best for students and families.”
Mary-Em Waddington has spent her career in the non-profit sector focusing on education, digital access, and the environment. Working with Surrey Students NOW, she has seen firsthand how overcrowding at local schools, and how lack of capital infrastructures and space, has limited student access to library time, gym time, sports clubs, and even bathrooms.
“My advocacy journey started with French Immersion which led me to understand the bigger picture and see how crippling the lack of capital investments across Surrey has been. Everything comes down to capital dollars and a funding model that works for the largest growing district across BC. We need change,” says Waddington. In taking their advocacy to the next level, Surrey Students NOW will continue to engage parents, educators, District, Ministry, and City staff.