Parents call for education rallies on April 12

Media coverage of Families Against Cuts to Education’s call for parents to hold rallies to protest underfunding of public education on April 12, 2015.

Solidarity key to protecting public education in British Columbia
rabble.ca – April 11, 2015

Hundreds of parents, teachers and students will be protesting education cuts in B.C. on Sunday. Families Against Cuts to Education is hosting the protests in five B.C. communities after yet another round of budget cuts for school boards and increased costs surreptitiously delivered through increases to BC Hydro rates and Medical Services Premiums. This, when B.C. already provides $1000 less per student than the Canadian average for per pupil funding.

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Smyth: Angry parents plan rallies across B.C. Sunday to vent on school cuts
The Province – April 10, 2015

Angry parents are staging rallies in cities around B.C. Sunday to protest what they say are the deplorable conditions in underfunded B.C. schools.

“Some of these school bathrooms are decrepit and it’s a symbol of a much bigger problem,” said Jennifer Stewart, a Vancouver mom and lawyer who writes a blog called Fix B.C. Ed. on the social-media site Tumblr.

“I heard from so many parents that the blog quickly became a visual catalogue of sadness.”

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Education rally, picnic set for Sunday at Beacon Hill Park
The Times-Colonist – April 10, 2015

A provincial day of action over what critics consider the underfunding of education will be marked in Victoria with a rally and picnic in Beacon Hill Park. The events are being held Sunday under the banner of Families Against Cuts to Education, or FACE.

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B.C. parents to stage education rallies
24hrs – April 8, 2015

“While the province maintains education is well-funded, parents who disagree are taking it to the streets — protesting funding cuts across B.C. this weekend.

On April 12, at noon, parents across five cities — Maple Ridge, Vancouver, Victoria, Kelowna and Nanaimo — are participating in the Families Against Cuts to Education rallies in an effort to have parents’ voices heard at the provincial level.

Jennifer Stewart, parent and part of the Fix BC Ed group organizing the Vancouver rally, said the protests are a direct result of the province not properly funding the public education system.

“This rally is for parents to come out and say, in a non-partisan way, we think education needs to be a priority again in this province,” she said.

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For public education in Vancouver, budgeting is a death by a thousand cuts
Metro – April 6, 2015

Last week, the Vancouver School Board’s senior management team delivered their initial proposal to address an estimated $8.52 million budget shortfall. The proposal is a diligent but sad exercise in death by a thousand cuts. It will see our schools fall further into disrepair, close doors on the city’s most vulnerable, and leave everyone in the system feeling more frustrated.

School boards across the province find themselves equally hooped. The province determines funding levels and though boards will see increased staff wages, higher BC Hydro and MSP costs, and increases courtesy of the feds for Employment Insurance and Canada Pension payments, the province won’t set funding levels to compensate.a

A new coalition of parent organizations calling themselves FACE (Families Against Cuts to Education), is planning a rally for noon on Sunday, April 12th outside the Vancouver Art Gallery. Go, take your kids. Let the province hear you yell.

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Upset parents rally in Maple Ridge against further school cuts
Fed up with continued cuts to schools, a Maple Ridge mom aims to send a message to the province
Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadow Times – April 1, 2015

As the trustees in School District 42 are busy pinching pennies and trimming the fat in an effort to reduce their budget by a further $1.3 million this year. Erin Duff, one Maple Ridge mom has seen enough.

She responded by getting involved with Families Against Cuts to Education (FACE), a group which is organizing a “day of action” across B.C. for April 12. Now, Duff is in the process of planning a Maple Ridge rally, to coincide with FACE’s day of action on the 12th.

“I saw on Facebook that there are rallies planned for a few B.C. communities, but not for Maple Ridge,” Duff said. “People need to start hearing about how much our education system is being starved. “

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Kelowna parent concerned about proposed changes to School Act
Kelowna Capital News – April 1, 2015

A parent of two elementary school students, Kelowna mom Shelley Courtney says proposed changes to the B.C. School Act will make it harder for parents to have input into what is happening at their children’s schools among a variety of changes that she says should be of concern to everyone involved in public education.

Under the legislation, which has yet to be passed into law, school districts will no longer need to have school planning councils in place. Consisting of administrators, parents and teachers, the councils were used as a way for parents to hear about, and have input into, the specific plan for their school.

“At our school what we have been doing is looking at all the work our teachers have been doing and how it’s directly improving students’ performance and it’s been fantastic,” said Courtney. “It’s the ability to give input but also to hear what is going on in the school. It’s a deeper understanding of the system where parents are able to advise the administration about where they see concerns and the administration can advise parents about what is going on in the school.”

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