Administrative Review Completed For Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board
McGuinty Government Accepts Independent Facilitator's Report
Independent facilitator Margaret Wilson has concluded in her report that the Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board followed its accommodation review policy in the West Secondary area.
Wilson's report was accepted by the Ministry of Education.
Wilson did note a violation of the school board's policy, but determined that it had no effect on the outcome of the accommodation review.
The ministry approved the community's request for an administrative review of the school board's process after local concerns were raised. Wilson, a former registrar and CEO of the Ontario College of Teachers, consulted with the local accommodation review committee, the school board and other interested community members.Decisions about student accommodations - including school closures - are the responsibility of locally elected school boards. Boards must have accommodation review processes that comply 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 Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board by more than 33 per cent.
- Since 2002-03, the Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board has built 14 new schools.
- 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.
- Margaret Wilson has performed other independent reviews of school closure processes, providing valuable feedback to school boards, communities and the ministry.