I grew up in a large farming family in rural Ontario. My family was highly engaged in school and community, fostering my own love of learning and service. My family set high expectations for work and study, which motivated me to pursue a M.Sc. and then Ph.D. in biomedical research. I settled in Toronto and have called East York home since 2000. I am the parent of three children, two attending TDSB schools and one now in university, and an active community volunteer.

I first became involved in public education when my oldest child entered school. As I learned more about the education system I shifted from local school involvement to board-wide advisory roles with the TDSB Parent Involvement Advisory Committee (PIAC). In 2018 I was elected Trustee for TDSB Ward 16, Beaches - East York (BEY), which afforded me the opportunity to work collaboratively with TDSB staff and Trustees on improving culturally responsive programming, equity, and best practices for education. It has been my pleasure to work with local school staff and communities, and BEY elected officials, to support our local schools.

We know that children succeed in education when families and communities are engaged and welcomed in their local schools. As Trustee (Beaches-East York) my goal has been to foster community engagement while providing sound governance for education programs, so that our children have the best chance to succeed. I am committed to keeping Ward 16 residents informed about school board events and resources, listening to feedback on policies and programs, and advocating to the Provincial government for greater resources for education.

Serving as a public school Trustee and education advocate in TDSB Ward 16 (Beaches - East York) for the past 4 years has been both challenging and rewarding. We've made great strides in improving system equity, promoting inclusive school communities, increasing access to programs, innovative solutions to building and maintaining schools, advancing the use of technology, increasing outdoor education, improving mental health resources, increasing city and community partnerships, and creating flexible work and learning environments. But there is still more work to do.

My focus is to ensure our education system continues to improve, to serve student needs in a manner that is transparent and accountable, communicates effectively with school communities, and fosters collaborative relationships.

Current committee memberships and roles:

Learn more about the role of Trustees in Ontario: https://elections.ontarioschooltrustees.org/

Learn more about Toronto Municipal Elections and register to vote: https://www.toronto.ca/city-government/elections/voter-information/myvote/


For questions regarding the municipal election please contact michelle@aarts.ca

For questions or concerns regarding your school or the TDSB please contact your school office staff directly (Find my School) or contact michelle.aarts@tdsb.on.ca or call the TDSB central offices at Tel: 416-395-8787