Impersonation, theft or just plain evil…someone took my name

Yup hard to believe really. I recently discovered a website in my name pretending to be me…I mean who does that sort of thing? And why? To what end? What is to be accomplished by doing this? Credibility is not gained by discrediting others.

I always believe that there is good in each and every person, but I am really struggling why somebody would do this. I seek to understand people before I pass judgement. If I don’t understand I work to establish relationships so that difficult conversations can be had. If you don’t like something I said, a decision I made, if you don’t agree with my values or beliefs…call me…let’s have a conversation. Pretending to be me by hosting a website and posting things on the website that are taken out of context to make me look bad is cowardly and lacks integrity.

As an elected person I anticipated kickback, frustration and even anger from folks on occasion. I get it – parents ultimately want the best educational experience possible for their kids and they are often willing to advocate to the ends of the earth for them…I know because I am one of those parents. I expected at times that communication with folks could lead to tough emails, heated meetings and difficult conversations but really nothing prepared me for this.

My goal has always been about ensuring that each and every child in the CBE, can achieve their full potential. I believe this because of the 104.000 students in our system, 3 of them are mine. I believe in the statements “kids come first” and “learning is our central purpose”. These two statements are written on the walls at the Education Centre to remind each of us students, teachers, support staff, administrators, trustees and whoever walks through our doors of why we are there. Why do I believe this? Because when it comes to making decisions within education, these two statements must be at the forefront of each and every decision. Public education is about building for our future, believing in our kids and ensuring that they are supported to reach their potential and be the best that they can be. I don’t believe that the creation of the website had anything to do with children…sounds more like political pettiness to me.

As a Trustee with the Calgary Board of Education I believe that I should model the values that are written through policy by the Board. Our governance results policies at the CBE speak to each and every student achieving Academic Success according to his/her ability which includes using digital tools safely, ethically and critically. The Board has also said that it believes that our students should be responsible citizens, build on their personal development and demonstrate good character.

The creation and impersonation of me on this fraudulent website is cowardly. It is not open and transparent. It frankly is really disappointing to see this happen. I hope the individual/s responsible are not modelling this destructive behaviour for others and I really hope they aren’t teaching their children that this is how you work with people. I believe this is in essence a form of cyber bulling….something that I do not condone, by definition this is actually a form of cybersquatting…so I am standing up for myself and letting people know. I am encouraging parents to have conversations with their kids about the positive things the web has to offer…. and the negative.


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