The decisions around school accommodations are some of the hardest decisions school boards have to make. To empower these local decision-making bodies to do so, the Ministry of Education provides school boards with the tools they need to make the best decisions for their community, based on local needs now and into the future. To ensure that decisions are made in the best interest of students and their families we require school boards to consult with the community, including parents, before a decision is made.
The conversation is multi-faceted and is focused on ensuring schools have enough students to offer a vibrant learning environment and a full range of programming – including course offerings, athletic opportunities and extracurricular activities.
On October 19, 2016, the Board of Trustees voted to proceed with a Pupil Accommodation Reviews (PAR), in response to a report submitted by the Director of Education. This is only the beginning of a conversation with parents and the community as a whole; at this initial stage it is too early to speculate on what the results of the review process will be. I encourage everyone to read the staff report (which can be found on page 29 here) and to participate in the meetings and consultations that will take place over the coming months.
Although neither the Ministry of Education nor Members of Provincial Parliament may intervene in PARs and the decisions that stem from them, I will nonetheless be following developments of this process very closely. I have full confidence in the Trustees at the Halton District School Board – as the elected officials tasked with these important decisions – to carry out this review and to make decisions that reflect the best interests of our students, their families and our community, in accordance with the PAR process.
If you have questions about the PAR process, please don’t hesitate to contact my office. In the meantime, more information on the review process can be found on the HDSB’s website.
This website is provided for your convenience. If you'd prefer to call or email, my staff and I would be happy to hear from you.
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