Dr. Nancy Spencer-Poitras
Superintendent of Schools
The Board of Trustees is delighted to announce that Nancy Spencer-Poitras has been appointed as the new Superintendent of Schools and Chief Executive Officer for the Northland School Division effective February 1, 2020. Dr. Spencer-Poitras has maintained an exceptional record of school and division leadership over an extensive career as an educator in Alberta. She has worked as a teacher, assistant principal, and principal with Edmonton Public Schools, as an Assistant Superintendent and Superintendent in Alberta, as well as having worked with both the College of Alberta School Superintendents (CASS) and Alberta Education. Since September 2017, Dr. Spencer-Poitras has held the position of Assistant Superintendent with Northland. In June 2019, she was named Acting Superintendent. Throughout her career, she has worked fervently to improve educational opportunities for students and children. Dr. Spencer-Poitras has a solid background of research and practice in educational leadership. She holds a Bachelor of Education degree and a Master of Education degree with a specialization in Administration and Leadership. She has recently completed her Doctor of Education in Educational Research from the University of Calgary. Nancy has also been recognized provincially for her work in education. She received the Distinguished Leadership Award in 2006 and won an Excellence in Teaching Award in 1997. Nancy is committed to moving Northland forward, continuing with its best practices in education and working collaboratively with students, staff, and parents to ensure the effectiveness and success of the Division. Nancy and her husband, Jack, are residents of Wabasca. They have four children; three boys and one girl. They have three beautiful granddaughters and are currently awaiting the birth of their first grandson.
Area 1 (West) Associate Superintendent
Northland School Division (NSD) is pleased to announce the appointment of Dermod Madden as Associate Superintendent. Mr. Madden’s 35-year career in education has come full circle. Madden served as a Principal, Assistant Principal, and Teacher in various Northland schools. He also worked with the central office as a Pedagogical Supervisor. “It is both a rare honor and privilege to be afforded the opportunity to come full circle in one’s career,” said Madden. “Much of what I have learned as an educator; and the person I have become; is due to both my formative teaching years working in Northland School Division communities and my tenure with Aspen View School Division. I am looking forward to the challenges ahead and the opportunities to create viable and sustainable teaching and learning environments for all our students.” “I am thrilled to welcome Mr. Madden back to the Northland family,” said Nancy Spencer-Poitras, Acting Superintendent of Schools. “Dermod’s knowledge of the jurisdiction and education within a rural context, his experience as an educator and as a school leader aligns with our commitment to inspire students to be the best they can be by providing outstanding holistic educational opportunities, with amazing staff and strong partnerships with families and communities.” Madden’s senior management experience is extensive. While working for Aspen View Public School Division, he served as the Director of Student Services, Associate Superintendent and the Superintendent of Schools. Madden’s commitment to lifelong learning has not gone unnoticed throughout his career. In 2011, he received the Premier’s Award of Excellence (Silver Medal Recipient) for Inclusive Practice: Development and Utilization of the Integrated Case Management Approach, (Wraparound): Student Services in Alberta. In 2008, Madden was a recipient for the Canadian National Inclusive Education Award. Madden is working towards completing a Doctor of Education in Distance Education. His doctoral thesis is entitled ‘The use of mobile technology in a junior high school blended learning environment’. In addition, Madden has a Master of Education: Educational Leadership from San Diego State University, a Master of Education: Curriculum/Instruction/ESL from the University of British Columbia and a Bachelor of Arts and Education from the Memorial University of Newfoundland. As Associate Superintendent, Madden will be responsible for ensuring proper supports are in place for NSD schools located in Area 1. Those schools include Paddle Prairie School, Bishop Routhier School (Peavine Métis Settlement), Gift Lake School (Gift Lake Métis Settlement), Hillview School (East Prairie Métis Settlement), Grouard Northland School and Susa Creek School. He will also be involved in helping NSD achieve division-wide priorities.
Dr. Joseph Pearce
Acting Area 2 Associate Superintendent
Dr. Joe Pearce was appointed Acting Area 2 Associate Superintendent in December 2019. Prior to the appointment, Joe was an Area 2 Pedagogical Supervisor. Joe brings extensive years of experience as an educator and as an administrator. Before joining the Northland family, Pearce served as Assistant Superintendent of Education for the South Slave Divisional Education Council. Joe’s education includes a Doctor of Philosophy - Educational Administration and a Masters of Education from the University of Saskatchewan, a Bachelor of Arts and a Teacher Professional Certificate from the University of British Columbia.
Dr. Tim Stensland
Area 3 (East) Associate Superintendent
Tim's career in education has come full circle. He began his career at Kateri School (Trout Lake) 28 years ago. Before joining NSD as Area 3 Associate Superintendent, he served as a Senior Manager with Alberta Education. While working as a Senior Manager for Alberta Education, Tim supported NSD through many programs such as the First Nations, Métis and Inuit Community Based Teacher Education Program, the Northland Teacher Induction Program, Supporting Beginning Teachers Program and the Northern Student Teacher Bursary. As Area 3 Associate Superintendent, Stensland is responsible for ensuring proper supports are in place for NSD schools located in: Athabasca Delta Community School (Fort Chipewyan), Anzac Community School, Bill Woodward School (Anzac), Fort McKay School, Father R. Perin School (Janvier), Conklin Community School, Elizabeth School and J.F. Dion School (Fishing Lake Métis Settlement).
Associate Superintendent - Human Resources
Wes has served as Director and Associate Superintendent of Human Resources since 2012. Oginski has been involved in education for 31 years in various roles. He spent 11-years as a teacher and principal, six years as Program and Curriculum Manager at Grande Yellowhead Public School Division, eight years as Director of Learning and Supervisor of Curriculum and Instruction at Rocky View School Division and also worked in the curriculum sector at Alberta Education. Wes has a Bachelor of Education and a Bachelor of Science from the University of Alberta and a Master of Art in Administration and Curriculum from Gonzaga University. He’s also in the process of completing a University Human Resources and Labour Relations Certificate.