District maintains two schools in McBride

School Board chair Tim Bennett.

McBride will continue to have two schools.

That point was made clear to the community at a May 1 meeting between School District 57 board chair Tim Bennett, Schools Superintendent Marilyn Marquis-Forster and McBride council. Concern was raised when the district’s Long Range Facility Plan talked about co-location of schools.

“The board recognizes the anxiety caused when the idea of co-location is brought up,” said Tim Bennett, board chair. “The approved motion to address outstanding recommendations from the Long Range Facility Plan was not intended to suggest co-location of schools in McBride was on the table or to cause unrest in the community.”

He added the board has directed staff that there will be two school in McBride come September and nothing will be considered until there is an educational and financial reason to do so. The community is serviced by McBridge Centennial Elementary School and McBride Secondary School.

“The school board and our local governments are both elected to ensure tax dollars are spent in the best interest of the communities we are elected to serve,” said Bennett. “The school board is committed to working to improve relationships with our municipal counterparts and ensure meaningful lines of communication are open.”

The province is currently reviewing the funding formula for schools and implementation of any changes, as a result of the review are expected to be tabled until 2020, according to the district. Council has suggested that the definitions of rural and remote schools be further defined as part of the review.

“Council would like to thank Superintendent Marquis-Forster and Chairperson Bennett for taking to the time come to McBride and meet with council to address citizen’s concerns for education in the Robson Valley,” said McBride Mayor Loranne Martin.

This fall the Robson Valley will have a voice on the School District board as it will elect one member from the area.