Ombudsman Ontario

Ombudsman Ontario

June 05, 2008 16:42 ET

Ontario Ombudsman now has the Power to Investigate the Toronto Catholic District School Board

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - June 5, 2008) -

ATTENTION NEWS EDITORS

Ontario Ombudsman Andre Marin now has the jurisdiction to investigate complaints about the Toronto Catholic District School Board following the provincial government's appointment of a supervisor for the board.

Through an Order in Council issued on June 4, 2008, the Ministry of Education took control of the administration of the Toronto Catholic District School Board. The Ministry has appointed Norbert Hartmann, as supervisor, to oversee the board's financial management and administration following the loss of confidence in the board's ability to manage its own affairs. This comes after the board's credibility was called into question upon the discovery of inappropriate spending habits of board trustees and an inability to balance the budget.

While normally the Ombudsman does not have jurisdiction over school boards in Ontario, that changes when the government takes direct control. The last time the Ombudsman's jurisdiction was extended to school boards was October 2006, after the Ministry took charge of the Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board.

Four provinces and one territory in Canada include school boards under ombudsman jurisdiction - British Columbia, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, and Yukon Territory. While the Ontario Ombudsman's Office normally has no authority in this area, our Office continues to receive serious complaints about school boards that cannot be investigated (79 complaints were received between April 1, 2007 and March 31, 2008).

School boards form part of the MUSH sector, - municipalities, universities, school boards, hospitals and long-term care facilities, as well as children's aid societies and police - an area immune to ombudsman oversight in Ontario despite thousands of complaints to the office each year (2,129 from April 1, 2007 to March 31, 2008).

Complaints about the Toronto Catholic District School Board or any provincial government service or agency may be made to the Ombudsman's Office at 1-800-263-1830, or via the online complaint form available at www.ombudsman.on.ca.

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Contact Information

  • To arrange interviews, please contact:
    Ontario Ombudsman - Linda Williamson
    Manager, Communications and Media Relations
    (416) 586-3426
    or
    Ontario Ombudsman
    Patricia Tomasi
    Communications Officer
    (416) 586-3402
    Website: www.ombudsman.on.ca