The Time for a Moratorium is Now

May 8, 2017

QUEEN’S PARK –MPP Jim McDonell challenged the Minister of Education today during Question Period following the education review committee meeting in Merrickville, last Friday.

 

“The meeting was a complete disappointment” MPP McDonell stated. “Stakeholders highlighted that it was simply too little too late. Unless a moratorium saves the schools currently slated for closure, by the time any kind of meaningful review is completed, it will be too late for many communities to save their school. We need a comprehensive and independent review of how we deliver services, including education, in rural and northern Ontario and unfortunately, the Minister’s hand-picked panel of three Liberal MPPs is hardly up to the job.”

 

The Ontario PC Caucus has repeatedly called for a moratorium on all school closures in Ontario until an impartial, comprehensive review of education is undertaken.

 

“The current education system is in a race to the bottom, encouraging parents to switch boards in their search for the quality education that the future of their children and our province depends on” MPP McDonell commented. “As an example, in Alexandria there are 5 different schools, all under 50% of capacity.  Under today’s rules, it is only a matter of time before they would all be under review for closure.  Just to add to the insanity, an elementary or kindergarten student from North Lancaster must ride a bus for over an hour to get to his or her UCDSB school, driving by all five of these schools plus an additional twenty minutes”.

 

“Students and parents demand a moratorium, communities demand a moratorium, municipalities demand a moratorium – yet the Minister refuses to listen to the people she is elected by and has sworn to serve” MPP McDonell concluded. “It is time she did what’s right for our students and our communities and stopped these flawed and unjustifiable closures”.

 

A video of the Question Period exchange is available at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=svoybga3Y4M