Pratpal Kaur Gill is Vancouver First candidate for Vancouver School Board

PRATPAL Kaur Gill, who is the Vancouver First candidate for Vancouver School Board, is a strong advocate for the empowerment of children. She is skilled in seeking out innovative programming and policies that enrich the knowledge base, skill sets, and confidence levels of students.

Pratpal’s passion in this area led her to organize the first live Kids Camp Expo in Vancouver in 2012 where parents were able to learn all about all the different summer camps being offered. She also designed and piloted an after-school leadership program for high school girls called The Empowerment Playground, where she continues to inspire and coach young girls.

At an international level, she worked as a policy analyst in Nairobi, Kenya, where she researched best practices for how to help youth living in slums to develop their small businesses. Her work was presented to the UN Habitat and a partnering non-profit organization called the Environmental Youth Alliance.

More recently, she sat on the Board at the UBC Sauder Alumni Club of Vancouver where they were responsible for the clubs programming pieces for over 16,000 alumni.  Her commitment to researching, developing and advocating for empowering programming is driven by her passion to help individuals to reach their maximum potential.

Pratpal obtained both her Bachelors and Masters degrees in Business Commerce and Health Administration from the University of British Columbia. She also has a graduate certificate in Value Based Leadership from Royal Roads University.

She has worked for both the federal and provincial government as a benefits administrator for Service Canada specializing in Employment Insurance. She has also worked with the at-risk and homeless populations for the Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovation.

Her platform priorities as a School Board Candidate include the following:

* Increase funding in schools through partnerships.

– Promote and expand the ecosystem between private and public entities, such that the Vancouver School Board supports the development of sustainable education-business relationships between the Board, its schools, and the community, and encourages community groups, businesses, corporations, labor groups, civic organizations, industries, government agencies, colleges, universities, and others to join in developing education-business relationships with the Board and / or its schools through various types of sponsorship/partnership arrangements for the benefit of the school community.

– Acceptable sponsorships / partnerships provide benefits to the educational, cultural, artistic or athletic programs of students through the donations/contributions of products, services or money to a school or the School District. The purpose is for the Vancouver School Board to secure sponsorships/partnerships that are consistent with the values, principles, and objectives of the School District.

– Revitalize and repurpose infrastructure to benefit the community, increase income and create childcare spaces.

* Expand after school programs

– The future is predicted to be a “gig economy,” which means technological skills, entrepreneurial experience, and financial literacy skills will be a valuable asset when preparing our children for future careers.

– We propose to introduce and partner up with more of those programming pieces and other innovative programs to compliment the current school curriculum as they would be delivered during after-school hours.  Parents are then empowered to select which programs best suits their children’s interests and needs.

* Programs she will support and expand:

– Financial literacy program for youth – having them learn life’s skills in money management and budgeting

– Entrepreneurial programming

– Language such as Punjabi / Hindi to be taught in after school programs from k-12

– Technology/coding and other innovative skills

– A city-wide mentorship program