Who We Are


As Director, Mike McKay is currently involved with the establishment and expansion of the Canadian Self-Regulation Initiative.  

In addition, Mike works within the education sector on shared service governance and processes as a Strategic Advisor to the BC Minister of Education.  Since July 1, 2012, Mike has served as Official Trustee in Cowichan Valley School District, a community where he had been a secondary school principal in the early 1990’s.   

At the end of 2013, with over 30 years’ experience in education, Mike McKay retired as Superintendent/CEO of the Surrey School District, a diverse and dynamic school system in one of Canada’s fastest growing cities.  In addition to having taught at both elementary and secondary levels, beginning in the Interior and moving to other districts in B.C., Mike served as a school and district administrator from 1986.  He also worked with the B.C. Ministry of Education as Director of Educational Innovation responsible for provincial intermediate and graduation programs.  His experiences as a member of the Provincial Working Group on Accountability Agreements and District Reviews led him to encourage schools to engage in value-added improvement processes, through which school communities commit to capacity building in a positive, appreciative enquiry environment.

Mike has served on the Boards of several organizations committed to championing Canada’s public education system and promoting B.C. internationally.  He is also active as a resource person on system improvement focusing on innovative leadership, accountability, ethics and professional learning communities. 


CEO and President of JKT based in Vancouver, BC. Tom is a former district school administrator who has extensive contacts with state and district administrators across North America. He is an expert in professional development, a former teacher, elementary principal, middle school principal and high school principal. Tom has also worked at the school level in curriculum development and implementation, teaching personnel, leadership development, career education, adult education, international education, funding and financial planning, as well as implementing a wide range of district wide innovations. He worked in the Ministry of Education in British Columbia as a regional coordinator – working with school districts to implement policy and programs. Currently he is the principal of JK Thomas Associates – consulting with Canadian and U.S. educational leaders to design professional development initiatives for K12 environments – both in a web based format and traditional face to face venues.



Gurdeep has been involved with the Canadian Self-Regulation Initiative since its inception in 2012.  She is responsible for the digital strategy and management of information and communications and has coordinated the various self-regulation conferences and institutes in BC.

In addition to 10+ years’ experience in administration and management in a corporate environment, Gurdeep spent several years in the non-profit sector coordinating community outreach programs and working directly with vulnerable adults and youth.  At a local community organization Gurdeep spent two years coordinating the continuous quality improvement process in preparation for and during accreditation.  She also served as a Board member focusing on the expansion of cultural diversity.  For seven years she worked in adult education providing skills instruction and facilitating career and employment programs.  

Since 2009 Gurdeep has worked in administration and office management at the Surrey School District.



Stuart Shanker is Distinguished Research Professor of Philosophy and Psychology at York University and Director of the Milton and Ethel Harris Research Initiative at York University (www.mehri.ca). He was educated at the University of Toronto, where he won several awards, including a scholarship to study at Oxford, where he obtained a First in PPE and won the Marian Buck Fellowship at Christ Church, where he obtained a First in a B Phil in Philosophy and a D Phil with Distinction in Philosophy. 

Among his awards are a Canada Council Doctoral Fellowship and Postdoctoral Fellowship; a Calgary Institute for the Humanities Fellowship; a University of Alberta Mactaggart Fellowship; an Iszaak Walton Killam Fellowship; and the Walter L Gordon Fellowship at York University. He has received many grants, among them a $7,000,000 grant to establish MEHRI, a state-of-the-art cognitive and social neuroscience centre.

Among his recent monographs are Calm, Alert and Learning: Classroom Strategies for Self-Regulation (2012); Human Development in the 21st Century (with Alan Fogel and Barbara King, 2008); El rizoma de la racionalidad (with Pedro Reygadas, 2008); Psychodynamic Diagnostic Manual (a member of the PDM Steering Committee, 2006); Early Years Study II (with J. Fraser Mustard and Margaret McCain, 2007); The First Idea (with Stanley Greenspan, 2004); Toward a Psychology of Global Interdependency (with Stanley Greenspan, 2002); Wittgenstein’s remarks on the foundations of AI (1998); Apes, language and the human mind (with Sue Savage-Rumbaugh and Talbot Taylor, 1998); and Wittgenstein and the Turning-Point in the Philosophy of mathematics (1998). He is the editor of several collections, among them The Routledge History of Philosophy (with G.H.R. Parkinson, 1994-2000); Language, Culture, Self (with David Bakhurst, 2001); and Ludwig Wittgenstein: Critical Assessments (with David Kilfoyle, 2002). 

Dr Shanker served as Director of the Council of Human Development for ten years; Director of the Canada-Cuba Research Alliance for six years; and he was President of the Council of Early Child Development in Canada for two years. Over the past decade he has served as an advisor on early child development to government organizations across Canada and the US and countries around the world, among them Australia, Bosnia, Colombia, England, Hungary, Ireland, Mexico, New Zealand, Northern Ireland, Peru, Romania, and Serbia. Most recently he served as the 2012 Thinker in Residence for Western Australia. 


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