Teachers Urge Board to Reconsider Boundary 2020

    TORONTO, Feb. 25 /CNW/ - There is still time, opportunity, and compelling
reasons for the Upper Canada District School Board to reconsider proposals
contained within the Boundary 2020 process, says Elementary Teachers'
Federation of Ontario (ETFO) President David Clegg.
    "Our Boundary 2020 submission, Protecting Elementary Education and Local
Communities, stresses that the message from community residents is loud and
clear: closing elementary schools unilaterally and transferring grade 7 and 8
students to high schools, in effect treating students as if they are simply
numbers of a financial balance sheet, is not in the best interests of either
students or communities," says Clegg.
    ETFO's submission (available on the protectourkids.ca website) comes to
the Board as it begins the next phase of its Boundary 2020 Review. Over the
next two weeks, regional Accommodation Review Committees will present their
'School Valuation Reports' reacting to community feedback on Boundary 2020
draft proposals.

    Based on its dedication to the educational needs of the Board's
elementary students and concerns it has heard from community residents, ETFO
provides a number of recommendations, including the following:

    -  That The Board offer an alternative plan to deal with declining
       enrolment that does not result in widespread school closures and
       transfer of grade 7 and 8 students.
    -  That a grade 6-8 configuration be pursued as opposed to a grade 7-12
    -  That the timetable for final decisions by the Board be extended by six
    -  That the Boundary 2020 process not proceed until the provincial
       government provides a detailed explanation of its election campaign
       promise to invest $500 million in rural schools.
    -  That the Boundary 2020 process not proceed until the Board
       investigates the implications of full-day kindergarten for space
       allocations and school populations.
    -  That French instruction from junior kindergarten to grade 4 be
    -  That any action considered by the board only be undertaken if it
       enhances the educational, physical, and emotional needs of students.

    The Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario represents 73,000
elementary public school teachers and education workers across the province
and is the largest teacher federation in Canada.

For further information:

For further information: David Clegg, President, ETFO, (416) 962-3836
(Office), (416) 948-1592 (Cell); Larry Skory, ETFO Communications, (416)
962-3836 (Office), (416) 948-0195 (Cell)

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Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario

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