Rory J. Koopmans, B. Admin., #203, 8912-156 Street, Edmonton, Alberta T5R 5Z2
April XIVth, MMX
Hon. David G. Hancock, QC, MLA, Minister of Education, Progressive Conservative, Edmonton-Whitemud
I got II the Centre IV Education School Closure Meeting at 4pm, IV a 6pm start, not knowing I'd be there till 1:26am this am. But I stuck it out. Kudos to the Trustees IV sticking it out, I disagree however with the decision to close Fulton Place & McCauley, those II schools were just II valuable. But kudos IV their bravery because the ones who voted in favour, well at least some of them will be voted out in the October MMX Trustee Writ.
But what arrogance they were showing one another, at least some of the Trustees towards eachother & administration and vice versa. Trustee Colburn & Trustee Chairman Fleming openly sniped at eachother. Trustee Fleming told Colburn to stick with the subject at hand when he asked unrelated but valuable technical questions. But then he let Trustee Rice blather on about nothing. He had no focus and no control. When he told folks not to applaud at points, he at other points let them do so, sorry, but he should have been consistent & thrown them all the hell out, parents and anyone else.
Trustee Fleming & his Vice-Chair Trustee Huff openly attacked eachother & were bitter about whether Trustee Shipka should be allowed to stay silent. Well according II the closure charter Act, all he has to do is vote, he does not have II communicate his feelings. It goes back to the Magna Carta, British Parliamentary democracy & respect in a debate. Trustee Huff twice chastised Shipka by name & another time inferred that "another Trustee" was too silent. Excuse me but everyone has a constitutional right to remain silent, even upon being charged and arrested.
Trustee Colburn disagreed with the Chairman & then said the Superintendent & Administration were unreassurring or rather "very unreassuring." He treated them with contempt. Trustee Gibson said lets talk about "global issues" thrice. I mean, lets have proper vocabulary. The kicker was they closed McCauley, despite pissing millions down the drain to refurbish it. Plus they cannibalized students into Spruce Avenue IV a combined Junior High, despite it being practically a dump in terms of facility's quality.
The other Trustees were sublime. I know tensions are high & Chairman Fleming made 16 oral mistakes & had to retract & adjust them. But this does not excuse him berating his Vice-Chair. He was beyond arrogant & Trustee Huff just egged him on to make him look horrid. This type of meeting is about the kids, not about scoring political points. Of course if Halvar Jonson & Ralph Klein hadn't neutered the board by taking their taxing power away, they might once again actually be respected & not hated by the public as a whole.
Tired Beyond Reason With Sadness IV The Kids,
Editor's Note: The meeting was 7 hours, 48 minutes long with only two X minute breaks. I realize the sniping was due II stress factors & I was also stressed and tired IV the kids, the trustees and administration.