“Parents should pay student fees.”, said Clarence Hansen chairman of the Vancouver (public) School Board at tonight’s all-candidate meeting at Britannia. In fact he argued that fees were more than simply necessary, but also worthwhile.
His remarks shocked the east side lower income crowd, that had enthusiastically applauded Vision’s Sharon Gregson, and COPE’s Bill Bargeman’s opposition to fees as undermining the very notion of free and universal public education.
Also stunning the audience was NPA candidate Heather Holden’s proud defence of FSA testing. She showed both her ignorance of the actual test, and a complete misunderstanding of the how student achievement is monitored and reported within the Vancouver School System. Again it was Sharon Gregson (Vision) and Bill Bargeman (COPE) who gave wion the audience over with devasting critiques of the use of FSA’s and how good and authentic student assessment can be done.
For those in the audience who had followed the incredible failure of the NPA’s Educational Facilities Review (EFR)- the repeated use by NPA candidates of the EFR as their great achievement in consultation, was simply laughable.
The NPA also listed the premier’s pet project “Neighbourhoods of Learning” as their other great achievement in advocacy.
I wish that there had been media there, who could have reported on the absolute nonsense being spun by NPA candidates. The sad thing is, that if people don’t come out and vote COPE and Vision on November 15th, we’ll be stuck with three more years of this. Our children can’t afford three more years of the NPA. Please spread the news.