The following is a follow-up to an open letter penned earlier this month to Jeff McMillan, Chair of the Board and Board Trustees Upper Canada District School Board from Benson Public School Parent, Donna Gladstone.
To: Jeff McMillan Chair of the Board and Board Trustees
Further to my letter of October 13th, 2016, requesting You, the Chair of the Board, to schedule a bus trip with all Board Trustees, to travel to each of the 29 schools recommended for closure, as part of the Building for Our Future Pupil Accommodation Review, I find it very disappointing and discouraging that I have not received a response from You!
It would seem to me since you have made it very clear in at least two video messages that no final decision has been made and that we must have “open dialogue” to quote a line in your message – You as Chair of the Board would want to ensure that you and all Board Trustees are familiar with each of the schools listed!
Stop putting all the onus on the ARC and the communities and take some responsibilities on yourself! The communities are speaking, parents are speaking, municipal councils want to speak but you are not allowing that! Let me ask you this Mr. McMillan:
“What if schools stopped “manufacturing” students and started to create learners who valued education? The present system is dominated by largeness; large schools, large classes, large counties or school districts. The face of education has been defined by textbook producers, testing companies, school supply businesses, school construction companies, lobby groups, politicians and so on. From this industrial model came the need for “standardized” testing to ensure product quality as the students move along the educational conveyor belt. The coldness of the production system has led to generations of learners who have been mass produced, all looking virtually the same, compliant and waiting to be told what to do by those in positions of authority. The schools of the 21st century need to embrace the power of downsizing. More people need to come in direct contact with the learner. This implies a downsizing in the bureaucratic hierarchy of the educational system, putting power in the classroom and enabling teachers to make a difference. Putting the “human” factor into our schools will allow educators and students to engage in learning experiences that move beyond indoctrinating to empowering them to use their strengths and talents to make a positive contribution to the world around them. The more intimate the contact, the better the opportunity for understanding and growth.” From the book ‘What If? – Learning for the twenty first century’ by Jeff McMillan, retired teacher and chair of the Upper Canada District School Board.
Yes Mr. McMillan you wrote this and how true it is!
Stop hiding behind Provincial Guidelines and “put the human factor into this process.”
Schedule the tour, answer my letter, and focus on the students!
In closing to quote another line in your book; “The present system is dominated by largeness; large schools, large classes, large counties or school districts. “
I look forward to you response
Benson Public School Parent