LETTER: Boundary parents band together to meet upcoming education challenges

By Contributor
February 14th, 2010

On Monday, January 25, 2010 a group of 45 community members met together to discuss concerns regarding our children’s education. Various events and circumstances have demonstrated the need for community members to become increasingly involved in the decisions that are being made on their behalf.

As a result the Boundary Educational Alliance (BEA) has been formed.

While the meeting started with a listing of negative experiences people have had, it quickly moved on to the underlying issues beneath these experiences.
There is a growing concern regarding the future of our children’s education.

Given the economic realities and the decreasing student population, some very difficult decisions are being made with more to come. Community members must realize that they are the only ones who can truly impact the decision making process. Currently, those decisions are made by a very small group of people who have failed to earn the respect of the many people whom they represent.

It is the School District #51 Board’s responsibility, along with its superintendent, to develop respectful relationships with parties they are connected with, as stated within their mission statement. Instead, it has appeared to have been an exercise in control, with the intent to divide and conquer interests and parties. This has been the cause of disrespect felt by parents and students alike. All of this has been based on an apparent assumption that parents and students will not care, and be unable to affect any positive change against such a mute governing body.

The formation of the BEA has been instigated by the frustration of voices unheard and issues unresolved. The formation of such a grassroots group is not a power struggle that seeks to have control.

The genesis of such a group of people is the increasing need to have those in authority be held accountable to meet the needs of those they represent with the resources they have been tasked with managing.

 It is the desire of the BEA to become an intelligent, persistent, caring and involved voice for our community. But it cannot be accomplished by a few community members. It will require a commitment by a large group of community members if it is to succeed. A large group will not only be a strong voice, but will also spread the responsibility so that none of us become overwhelmed in the task before us.

The group met once again on February 3rd. One of the outcomes of that meeting was to invite parents with similar concerns from the rest of the Boundary to meet together. To that end the Boundary Educational Alliance is inviting concerned community members to meet on Tuesday, February 23 @ 7 pm in the lower room at Selkirk College in Grand Forks.

On Behalf of BEA,

Mark Danyluk can be contracted at: 449-2644 or markdanyluk@shaw.ca  

Categories: General