Darrel Robertson

For the past 17 years, Darrel Robertson has dedicated his career to supporting the success of students at Edmonton Public Schools. His passion for education has allowed him to be a transformative force in each of the roles he has undertaken with the District, including his time as a teacher, curriculum co-ordinator, assistant principal, principal, supervisor, director and managing director. Mr. Robertson’s core values are shaped by a social capital perspective – an ideology that has inspired his leadership and served as the foundation of his efforts to create opportunities for learning, growth and success for every member of the organization. His belief in building and maintaining trusting relationships – ones that bind people together around a common purpose and vision – has been the key to forming cultures in school communities and departments that have thrived on co-operative action and positivity. Regardless of the position he has taken on, Mr. Robertson has proven to be a leader who can build bridges of understanding and work together with students, staff, parents and community members to develop innovative and effective solutions. His efforts as an administrator point to how much he cares about supporting student success and improving student achievement. As a principal and assistant principal, he implemented a school-wide intervention strategy for at-risk students that improved successful course completion rates as well as a ‘Blended Campus’ concept where high school students could access post secondary and career coursework while completing their high school requirements. He also demonstrated remarkable skills as a financial manager, working with staff to effectively erase a large deficit while maintaining excellent academic standards and results, leaving the school on a significantly healthier financial footing.


Through various leadership roles in Human Resources, Mr. Robertson has tackled challenging assignments, including those in the areas of labour relations and negotiations. Here, his abilities as a strong communicator and relationship builder shine, concluding collective agreements with CUPE locals in a way that not only addressed contentious issues, but also fostered collaborative decisions that broke down barriers and surpassed expectations of what was thought possible. A compelling example is the changes he helped to make in the Custodial collective agreement, which led to the creation of a Custodial Career Pathway. This breakthrough program will improve the success rates of staff in achieving the certifications they need for their position and will help the District attract and retain qualified staff. Mr. Robertson also participated in the design and administration of a competency based leadership development framework, which saw 350 staff members from all groups engaged in leadership capacity building activities and modules within its first year. Finally, he helped to implement a new point factor classification system in collaboration with CUPE 3550 to ensure over 2,000 support staff are appropriately compensated for the duties of their position in a fair and consistent manner. Attaining his MBA in 2006, Mr. Robertson is a recipient of the Governor General’s Gold Medal for highest academic standing at the graduate level. With extensive experience and expertise in education and business administration, he brings an ideal combination of abilities to his new role as Superintendent. He approaches his Superintendency focused on ensuring all students, staff, Trustees, parents and community partners feel part of a larger cause that’s dedicated to creating a culture of trust, support and excellence. Through this vision, Mr. Robertson hopes to conceptualize a new way forward for Edmonton Public Schools, helping the District advance as the centre of opportunity and great equalizer he believes it to be.


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