BC parent advocate experts in Chilliwack for workshop

Parents invited to attend free workshop hosted by DPAC

Parents are often put into the position of advocating for their children.

And to help parents through that sometimes-tricky role, the Chilliwack District Parent Advisory Council has organized a special information evening with two experts. They’ve invited Jen Mezei and John Gaiptman from the BC Confederation of Parent Advisory Councils out to speak on Feb. 22. The free workshop is open to all parents in the district, from grades Kindergarten to 12, and will cover the process of advocating for your children.

Mezei is the president of the BCCPAC, and has been involved with PAC and DPAC for more than a decade, including five years as the Burnaby DPAC chair. She has been a parent representative on education, special education, LGBTQ, advanced learning and policy committees. Her bio on the BCCPAC page says she is passionate about providing parents with the opportunity to provide meaningful and informed input, and believes that the sharing of information is necessary to build capacity within PACs and DPACs and to strengthen the parent voice in the collaborative process.

She has three children, works in the renewable energy sector, and is the 2010 winner of the BCCPAC George Matthews award for excellence in Parent Leadership.

Gaiptman is the BCCPAC Executive Director, and has been in public education for 37 years. For the past 14 years, he has been superintendent of schools; 12 of which were with the Victoria School District and two with the New Westminster School District. He is married with two daughters and one granddaughter.

Together, the duo will cover topics like preparing for meetings, navigating district policy and procedures, and working collaboratively towards solutions.

Parents will explore example scenarios throughout the workshop. It is taking place at the Neighbourhood Learning Centre at 7 p.m. on Feb. 22. (time subject to change) For more information, visit the event page on Eventbrite, or visit the District Parent Advisory Council page on Facebook.

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