Please sign our petition and let Vancouver School Board trustees know that you oppose actions that will result in cutting programs for students, closing neighbourhood schools, and selling off of public lands.
On May 10th, Vancouver School Trustees voted on a 2023-2024 school district operating budget. COPE School Trustee Suzie Mah voted in opposition to approving the 2023-2024 budget for the following reasons:
Cuts to programs
Continued erosion of services for special needs students. Currently these students are not getting the regular support they need because their specialist teachers are being used to cover other teacher absences.
Consolidation of alternate and district programs into one or two centralized locations which may lead to less staffing and options to support students in these programs. Adding these students back into larger and more populated high schools may impact their willingness to attend school and may stigmatize these students.
Annex and school closures. At this time, we do not have a list of specific annexes or schools that may be closed, but over the past ten years there has been a closure list naming all annexes, at least three high schools, and several schools (predominantly on the east side of the city). The effect of closing these annexes and schools would be devastating to these school communities.
Senior managers continue to use data that shows a decrease of 5,000 students over the next few years while Ministry of Education data shows that Vancouver will see an increase of at least 10,000 new students. Why are we closing schools when we will need to keep our classrooms?
Selling of Public Land
Disposal or partial disposal of taxpayer paid public land. There are strict rules about the sale of school property land. If there is disposal, what types of leases would be offered and what type of development would occur? What if we need these buildings and properties back?
Students not being able to attend their neighbourhood school
Students should have the right to attend the school closest to where they live. They shouldn’t be subjected to a lottery system where if your name isn’t picked, you have to go to another school. We want our students to get the health benefits of being able to safely walk to school. We want less cars on the road to lower our carbon footprint.
For more information go HERE.
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We, the undersigned, demand that Vancouver School Board trustees not cut programs, close schools, or sell public land.
We want a better-funded public school system that gives Vancouver's students the supports they need to learn successfully.