NDP demands Wynne government stop forcing community schools to close

During question period today, Windsor West MPP and NDP Education Critic, Lisa Gretzky, called on the Wynne Liberal government to take responsibility for their role in closing schools and to recognize the value of community schools across Ontario. ‎

“In Markdale, the closure of Beavercrest Community elementary school would devastate the community and hinder economic growth in the area,” said Gretzky. “Chapman’s went so far as to offer to buy the school; even the Mayor of Grey Highlands offered to offset deficit spending. Hundreds more schools like Beavercrest may be on the chopping block—schools like Queen Victoria Public School, Hugh Beaton Public School and Prince Edward Public School in Windsor.” 

Approximately 25 per cent of the Beavercrest student population are the children of employees at Chapman’s Ice Cream. The company, along with area politicians and residents have put forward a number of proposals to allow Beavercrest to stay open.

“Rather than providing community schools with the resources to stay open, this government is cutting rural grants, eliminating base top-up funding and grossly underfunding renewal needs,” said Gretzky. “If business, local politicians, students and families can see the value of schools like Beavercrest and those in my community, then why doesn’t this government?”