Premier Wynne appointed Liz Sandals as Minister of Education on February 11, 2013. Liz Sandals has served as the Parliamentary Assistant to the Ministers of Health and Long-Term Care, Transportation, Education, Government Services, and Community Safety and Correctional Services. She led the government’s Safe Schools Action Team and served on the Standing Committee on Public Accounts, the Select Committee on Mental Health and Addictions and Treasury Board/Management Board of Cabinet.
Sandals first became involved in politics with education issues. She was elected to the local public school board in 1988 and was re-elected four times. She served as chair of the board and was elected as president of the Ontario Public School Boards’ Association (OPSBA) from 1998 to 2002. She also sat on the board of directors of the Canadian School Boards Association.
In recognition of her work as OPSBA president, she was selected as the first recipient of the “Outstanding Contribution to Education Award” by the Ontario Principals’ Council. The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health’s Centre for Prevention Sciences (London) presented Sandals with their 2009 Fourth R Award in recognition of her leadership on the Safe Schools Action Team and her significant contributions to making Ontario schools safer.
Prior to her election, Sandals worked as a computer programmer analyst and taught computer science at the University of Guelph. Sandals grew up in Guelph and received a Bachelor of Science from the University of Guelph and a Masters of mathematics from the University of Waterloo. Sandals and her husband, David, have two children, Richard and Allison, and three grandchildren.