BROOKFIELD – Mike Henderson is starting on a new education review panel with an open mind.
The retired businessman is one of six Nova Scotians named to the panel, led by Myra Freeman.
“What I hope to see come out of the panel is ‘I don’t know.’ I think there are lots of things that could be looked at and that could be improved,” said the 59-year-old who recently retired from Stanfield’s Ltd. after 34 years. “I don’t think things need fixing, but I believe, just like in any business, there needs to be continual improving.”
Education and Early Development Minister Karen Casey announced the panel members on Feb. 19. The panel will look at what is working with the public education system and what needs improvement.
“Everyone has opinions, including myself, but I want to learn the facts. I want to learn what I’m right about and where I’m wrong, and then I’ll go from there.”
Henderson spent his most recent years at Stanfield’s filling the role of vice-president of manufacturing.
“I saw lots and I learned lots relative to the labour force – what skills people had and what skills they didn’t have,” he said.
Having been through the education system here and having adult children graduate as well, Henderson wonders if things should be differently.
“Is or should the education system be more responsive to the community needs?” he asked. “I’m really going in with a blank slate.
“I think we have a great and diverse group.”
Joining Henderson on the panel are Tina Dixon of Bear River, Digby Co., Kyle Hill, Toronto, formerly of Yarmouth, Glace Bay’s Gordon MacInnis, and Donna O’Connell of Pugwash.
“There has not been a comprehensive review of education in 25 years and a lot has changed,” Casey said in a news release about the panel. “Government is committed to a new direction for the public education system.
“This review is the first step to doing that. I encourage all Nova Scotians to give the panel their thoughts on how to improve public education. We want people to be part of the changes ahead for education.”