School board looking to offer courses to public

The Rainy River District School Board is considering offering continuing education courses for the general public in an effort to promote life-long learning and reach out to the community.
The board discussed the idea at Tuesday night’s regular monthly meeting in Atikokan and supported moving ahead with it.
“For a year or so, we’ve been looking at how we can fill the gaps in the community with respect to other programs,” Education Director Warren Hoshizaki noted.
The continuing education program would offer credit courses such as Grade 12 language and mathematics for adults and students not presently enrolled in day-time classes, summer courses, tutoring sessions, and non-credit general interest courses and workshops.
The courses would be held at the board’s three high schools across the district, with interested teachers guiding the classes.
“I think what we’re looking at is making available our expertise and the expertise that we have in the system, as well as the facilities,” Hoshizaki said.
“Make it a truly community environment, a real connection to schools, and kids and teaching.”
“I think it’s a very good idea,” said board chair Gord McBride. “There are a number of people over high school age who are interested in further educating themselves, and I think this is going to give them an opportunity to do that.”
The program is intended to be self-sufficient—or even raise money for the cash-strapped board. Hoshizaki said they’re hoping to start a few pilot courses this year and if the program is successful, add more in coming years.
“If the need is there, we will try to meet those needs. If the need isn’t there, then we will find that out, too,” he reasoned. “This is a way of placing ourselves in the community as a learning organization.”