Province Seeks Public Input on Rural Education
Prince George, B.C. – The provincial government is looking for public input into a new rural education strategy its launched.
The action has been undertaken by Parliamentary Secretary for Rural Education Linda Larson to better understand the needs of students, parents, schools and communities in rural B.C.
If you’d like to give your feedback you can do so online by clicking here until Jan. 9, 2017.
After that the government says a discussion paper will be developed and posted online for further comment, followed by several regional meetings that will be hosted by Larson. Stakeholder groups may also submit formal submissions to government which will also be posted online.
Victoria says all feedback will help shape a final report on an integrated rural education strategy, including recommendations for the future.
Rural education has long been an issue in this region. Last June for example, last minute funding by the provincial government saved two rural schools in the Quesnel School District from permanent closure.
Both Parkland and Kersley Elementary schools were slated for closure due to a million-dollar deficit the Quesnel Board of Education was facing but were saved with money from the newly created Rural Education Enhancement Fund (Parkland received just over $248,000, Kersley just over $282,000).
Schools in Giscome and Hixon have also been threatened with closure in the past but survived the chopping block.
According to the provincial government, about 32% of the students in the K-12 education system go to schools located outside of the Greater Victoria, Lower Mainland and Kelowna areas.