School board funding cuts send a message to Ontarians

Posted on December 18, 2018 in Education Policy Context – Opinion/Readers’ Letters

Re: Schools ‘blindsided’ as province slashes funds, Dec. 15

The Doug Ford PC government continues to spread its special brand of chaos, this time throwing the plans of Ontario school boards, students and parents into disarray.

What a lesson in democracy for Ontario students: the government’s own consultation on education still had a day to run and there was no notice to students. Timing the announcement for a Friday afternoon, 10 days before Christmas, is a blatant attempt to avoid public scrutiny of a terrible decision. More than 24 hours later, there is still no information posted on the government’s website.

This latest attack is a clear sign of what Ford has in store for Ontario’s schools. For those of us who care about public education in this province, it’s a sobering message for what’s ahead for 2019.

Laura Walton, Belleville

The reason given by the Doug Ford government to cut funding for programs that assisted needy teenagers to obtain after-school jobs, provided support for racialized youngsters and gave some assistance with Indigenous issues, is yet another example of the government’s couldn’t-care-less attitude about the cost-cutting that affects the most needy throughout the province.

The announced “wasteful spending” explanation can easily be corrected if the provincial government believes the cost – which amounts to just one per cent of school board funding — is helping those needing help. One of the tenets of good governance is to identify areas where assistance is needed and not throw out the baby with the bathwater.

Stan Adamson, Etobicoke

The people of Ontario need to understand that Doug Ford does not place any value on education, culture, the environment or programs for the poor. Those are the areas he will continue to cut.

Sadly, each time they make these cuts, they use an identical excuse. You just need to substitute what they are cutting for the word “students” in this quote from Saturday paper: “A spokesperson for Minister of Education Lisa Thompson said Saturday that such funds must be ‘better managed so that they have the greatest impact on students.’ ”

Someone really needs to ask them what that means. My interpretation is that it means it’s gone and soon you will forget what we did. Kind of like the sex education curriculum, two paid sick days and midwives.

Oh well, at least we have buck a beer and open for business signs.

Michael Yaffe, Toronto

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