Friday, March 18, 2016

As Spring Break arrives, still no date set for vacant School Board position

When Judy Carlick-Pearson handed in her resignation from the School District 52 Board last fall, few in the community probably thought that the position would still be vacant as the final quarter of the school year started.

With Spring break set to start on Monday, the Prince Rupert School District has yet to announce when residents of the city will bring the Board's trustee levels back to their full amount of seven members.

The issue has been complicated by a back and forth discussion between the School District and the City of Prince Rupert over the nature of the required by-election and the cost associated to it.

The last word that was made public about that issue came on February 9th, when the City moved forward with its  plan to install a Chief Electoral Officer and Deputy Electoral Officer to conduct the vote.

At that time, the School District outlined a number of concerns that they had with the City's decision and the approach that the City had taken.

Since then, there has been no further public comment from the School District as to what comes next in the electoral process.

The lack of the seventh member of the School District board has already provided for some issues at the District level, with SD52 noting that the recent vote on the school calendar issue resulted in a tie vote.

A situation which leaves the District trustees in a deadlock when it comes to the path ahead on that now controversial discussion. With another meeting set for March 30th, it's hard at this time to see how there will be any different outcome when it comes to that situation.

Still to come and making for an even larger issue for the School District, is the need to address a budget shortfall of over one million dollars, a discussion that seems destined at this time to go forward without the empty seat at the Board level being filled.

There of late seems to be a bit of an information gap for residents of the region when it comes to School District issues, the updates on topics of concern have become less frequent and the much needed background on many of those issues has been somewhat lacking at times.

The vacant trustee position is just one of those issues that needs clarification and is something that those that have an interest in education issues on the North Coast no doubt hope will soon be addressed by School Board officials.

For more items related to education on the North Coast see our archive page.

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