Administrative Review Completed For Keewatin-Patricia District School Board
McGuinty Government Accepts Independent Facilitator's Report
Independent facilitator Joan Green has concluded in her report that the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board was thorough and compliant with its accommodation review policy in Kenora.
Green's report was accepted by the Ministry of Education.
The ministry approved the community's request for an administrative review of the board's process after local concerns were raised about it in the city of Kenora. Green, the founding CEO of the Ontario Education Quality and Accountability Office, consulted with the local accommodation review committee, the school board and people who participated in the process.
Decisions about student accommodations - including school closures - are the responsibility of locally elected school boards. Boards are required to have an accommodation review process in place that complies with the government's Pupil Accommodation Review Guideline, which emphasizes community consultation, transparency and local accountability. Administrative reviews help communities and boards fulfill those core principles.
- Since 2002-03, the McGuinty government has increased funding to the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board by more than 18.2 per cent and funded the construction of a new elementary school in Dryden.
- Joan Green concluded that the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board conducted this review in good faith and with attention to the requirements of the board's policy and the needs and views of the affected communities.
- Final decisions regarding school closures rest with the local board of trustees.
- The ministry encourages students, parents and community members to get involved in the accommodation review process as local feedback is key to a thorough review.
- The ministry's Pupil Accommodation Review Guideline mandates minimum timelines for consultation and an evaluation process based on the value of a school to its students and the community.
- The guideline helps direct boards during pupil accommodation reviews, which are required in most circumstances when a school closure is considered.
- Joan Green has performed other independent reviews of school closure processes, providing valuable feedback to school boards, communities and the ministry.