HORGAN OUTLINES EDUCATION PLAN

VICTORIA — NDP leadership candidate and Juan de Fuca MLA John Horgan announced his plans for a high quality and balanced education system in British Columbia. “Public education has been treated as a political football for too long,” said Horgan. “We need to let teachers teach, students learn and parents have confidence that their children are receiving the best education we can provide.”

Horgan said that under his leadership an NDP government would:

Work with local Boards of Education to develop and support specialty programs in the fine arts, sciences, trades, sports excellence, gifted education and other areas, so that each child has the opportunity to maximize their talent and potential in the public school system,

  • Restore services like librarians, special education teachers, and needed support in classrooms to help both students with special challenges and students with special skills work to the best of their ability,

  • Enforce class size limits for grades 1 through 3,

  • Work with stakeholders to ensure that the education funding formula is equitable, and meets the needs of both urban and rural school districts,

  • Protect Districts from school closures for three years, in order to ensure that closures only happen as educationally sound decisions,

  • Provide real assistance to aboriginal students, 50% of whom are not graduating from high school,

  • Work with First Nations communities to find ways to attract and keep teachers for these kids in these communities,

  • Restore core funding for the vital CommunityLINK program to provide breakfast and lunch, school based support workers and counselling for children at risk,

  • Reform the FSA with the input of teachers, parents, academics and others so that it truly tells us how the system is doing,

  • Extend the early childhood education system in BC to incorporate pre-kindergarten children in safe, well planned local centres with trained staff helping children reach their social and developmental goals,

  • Eliminate the use of “permanent portables” in fast growing communities,

  • Provide adequate support for immigrant and refugee students for whom English as a second language, and

  • Restore teachers right to free collective bargaining.

“There are few things parents place greater importance on than their children’s education,” said Horgan. “We need to reach out to educators, school trustees, parents and communities and get down to the difficult work of ensuring that every young British Columbians receives the quality education they deserve.”

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For more information please contact:
Kim Emerson, 250-920-6463 or visit www.horganforbc.ca