SD20 should stand up to government

"It should be apparent to the trustees of School Board 20 that the provincial government has misplaced its priorities."

On Tuesday  District School board 20 conducted second reading and sent for third reading a bylaw to close Mclean Elementary School and convert Rossland Secondary School to K to 9 and bus grades 10-12 to Crowe in Trail.

As a concerned resident of School Board District 20 I would like to draw attention to a story that appeared in your paper on Jan. 23 reporting the BC government’s announcement of granting $11 million towards hosting The Times of India Film awards in Vancouver (Bollywood coming to B.C., Trail Times Jan. 23).

The current Liberal government under Christy Clark has demonstrated by this act of handing $11 million to organizers of this event that they would rather fund and support film workers jobs in South Asia than fund schools in B.C.

It should be apparent to the trustees of School Board 20 that the provincial government has misplaced its priorities.

The cutbacks to education in B.C. by this government have forced school board trustees to make decisions that should not have to be made if we had responsible provincial government.

It appears to me after attending Tuesday’s meeting the result has been a fracturing of the opinions of board members to the point where they are defending the needs of the students just in their individual towns and not across all the communities in District 20.

The board members should unite among themselves and represent all the students and communities in the school district.

Therefore the trustees should have the integrity and courage to deny the provincial government’s restraints on Districts 20’s budgetary affairs and not pass the bylaw to reorganize Rossland’s schools at the third reading.

Any decisions made about school closings in District 20 should wait until after the next provincial election to ensure the School Board is working under guidelines from a government with a secure mandate from the people of British Columbia.

Donald ShawRossland BC