Deadline for school feedback extended
Those who thought they were too late to offer feedback on the future of Sturgeon Creek School now have another chance.
The final public consultation was held Jan. 15. But due to a miscalculation of dates, the deadline to submit written feedback has been extended to Feb. 7.
The final meeting of the committee, which was formed to review the information from the four public consultation sessions and decide upon a recommendation for the board, now is tentatively scheduled for Feb. 12.
“So if anyone has anything they want to comment on, give ideas, suggestions, or feedback, there is still time to get it in,” McCormick noted, though adding only written submissions are being accepted.
Written submissions can be e-mailed to email@example.com or faxed to 274-5078.
McCormick also will accept submissions and feedback at firstname.lastname@example.org
McCormick said all feedback is welcome given the final decision made about the school’s future could have a big impact on many people.
“It’s not just kids and their parents,” she stressed.
“I’m trying to stress that it’s affecting everyone so everyone needs to show they are supporting this.”
The accommodation review process was enacted by resolution by board trustees back in June, 2011 in order to conduct an open and transparent review regarding the future of three schools: Donald Young in Emo, Sturgeon Creek in Barwick, and Crossroads in Devlin.
Donald Young School’s accommodation review was completed last year and recommended the board “build a new school on the current site of Donald Young School, with consideration given to future enrolment due to the mining industry and to consolidation with other schools.”
But the review also suggested postponing the building of the school for three years to allow time for consideration of community partnerships, as well as to be open for a consolidation with another school, such as Sturgeon Creek and/or Crossroads.
Crossroads School will undergo its accommodation review in the near future.
The three options being considered by the Sturgeon Creek Accommodation Review Committee are:
•continued maintenance of the school;
•school closure and a redrawing of boundary lines; or
•consolidation with a new Donald Young School in Emo.
The review considers the value of Sturgeon Creek School to the student, the community, the board, and the local economy, with the quality of the learning experience of the students being weighted to have the most impact on the decision-making.
Four public consultations were held Oct. 23, Nov. 20, Dec. 20, and Jan. 15, with many students, former students, former employees, parents, and community members making a case to save the school.
McCormick had strived
earlier this month to ensure the final public consultation was well-attended. And she wasn’t disappointed, with about 100 people filling the gymnasium at the rural school.
“We were pretty pleased with the turnout,” she enthused. “And proud of the feedback.
“We had a jam-packed meeting full of presentations and letters.
“I think we’ve done a really good job of presenting information in support of the school,” McCormick added.
The recommendation determined at the committee’s meeting in mid-February then will be presented to the school board at its regular meeting in March.
“We’re also really open to suggestions as far as the presentation goes,” said McCormick.
“So if anybody has any brilliant, creative ideas about what would look good in our presentation, I’m definitely open to that feedback, too.
“I’m really hoping to have a unique and meaningful presentation,” she continued. “Something that’s going to really resonate with them [the board] and capture all the emotion and passion that was present in all of the public meetings.
“To try to convey that to [the trustees] because they weren’t all there.”
With regards to the three options up for consideration, the committee is taking into account bus times should the boundary lines be redrawn, which would see some Sturgeon Creek students attend Riverview School in Rainy River while others would be moved to Donald Young in Emo.
It also is looking at finances in all regards—from the cost to maintain the school to the cost of additional busing.
Above all, the value to the students is given the highest consideration.
The board will not make any decisions until the accommodation review process is completed at Crossroads.
Information regarding the accommodation reviews can be found on the school board’s website at www.rrdsb.com