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P.E.I's French-language school board begins streaming public meetings

Gilles Benoit. - Contributed
Commission scolaire de langue francaise (CSLF) board chairman, Gilles Benoit. - Contributed

It's a move to boost transparency

The board of trustees of the Commission scolaire de langue francaise (CSLF) has decided to try to be more transparent.

During a recent meeting, the board decided to broadcast its regular meeting live on social media.

CSLF staff previously broadcast on Facebook a press conference on April 20, 2018, on the legal notice against the province for underfunding the French-language school system, as well as the July 12, 2018, swearing-in ceremony of the newly-elected board. The first event was seen by 955 viewers, while more than 1,300 viewers saw the second. Aware of the success of these broadcasts, the board decided to increase their frequency.

The board decided to broadcast a few meetings before making a definitive decision in the fall. Its first event will be the public presentation of the 2018-19 annual financial report, which will be held on June 26.

Two regular monthly meetings will then be broadcast, as well as its general annual meeting to be held in late October.

Gilles Benoit, chairman of the board, said all efforts to improve transparency and accountability of the board are worthwhile since the CSLF is a public institution created by the legislative assembly that receives funding from the province and whose board is elected by the members of the Acadian and francophone community by universal suffrage.

The board will also publish its minutes online.

Nevertheless, the board is concerned about the costs of streaming, the quality of the image and sound and the impact on the deliberative process.

“So, it wanted to broadcast a few meetings over the next few months in order to gauge the costs, quality and impact of the streams, as well as the reaction of parents and other members of the community, before deciding once and for all,’’ Benoit said.
 

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