School governance and democracy Every time the FCSQ has the chance, it promotes the role and the importance of school democracy, which is the strength of our public education network. In its continuous efforts to promote greater citizen participation, the FCSQ welcomed Bill 185, delaying school board elections and asking the Directeur général des élections to allow for remote voting and electronic voting. The Comité de valorisation des élu.e.s tabled an action plan at the local, regional and national levels. As a follow-up to this approach, a strategic committee – made up of school board presidents – was established within the Fédération to implement the action plan. More than 300 people, elected school board officials, managers and education partners, responded to the FCSQ’s invitation and took part in its conference on May 30 and 31 in Sherbrooke. During the opening address, participants heard the leaders of two national school board associations, in the United States and Canada, Mr. Thomas Gentzel and Ms. Laurie French, who discussed the issues and challenges related to school governance. Through various themes – sustainable development, integration and diversity, and communications – participants reflected on governance and the role of elected school board officials as agents of the future, for school retention and student success. These issues were also touched upon by Mr. Michel Nadeau, from the Institute for Governance of Private and Public Organizations, in his closing address. The FCSQ recommends free specific projects for enhanced fairness The FCSQ has consistently supported school boards with regard to the collective action on school fees. On July 30, 2018, the Superior Court approved an agreement between the 68 school boards involved and the claimants. On several occasions thereafter, the Fédération emphasized the urgent need to act on this issue in order to avoid potential legal actions. In February 2019, the government put forward Bill 12, An Act to clarify the scope of the right to free education and to allow the regulation of certain financial contributions that may be required. The brief presented by the FCSQ as part of special consultations highlights a number of issues. First, it was essential to obtain an assurance that network players would be consulted during the drafting of the regulation stemming from the bill. In order to guarantee accessibility and fairness for all students, regardless of their environment, the Fédération recommends that the government fund all special projects and programs.