Schools are not closed to provide more resources for a stressed school district; they are closed as part of the process of cuts and downgraded services – resources do not increase with school closure. If that were true – after the number of schools we have closed in this district and this province – we should be rolling in funds but we are not.
The ministry mandated school population guidelines do not reflect the conditions in small communities and therefore are without any redeeming value – What is the educational rationale for insisting on a precise enrolment figure for any school? Obviously each neighbourhood has it’s own distinctive needs and characteristics.
The condition of a school is not the critical issue in school closure decision; schools are not closed because they are in a deteriorated state rather they are left to become decrepit because they have been slated for closure – bit of a difference, wouldn’t you say?
The learning and working environment of small schools is a premium experience – wealthy families pay big bucks for private schooling to buy what our small schools provide as a public service. If their kids deserve these circumstances then so do ours.
Public schools are about more than the immediate needs of families who are currently using them – they are public spaces and a community resource that echo on long after any family or child has left to go on with their education – we should regard them as a public trust and a central feature of a civilised place to live.
Your Trustee in Exile