Vancouver, BC (April 28, 2016) – The Vision Vancouver School trustees — Joy Alexander, Patti Bacchus, Mike Lombardi and Allan Wong — will be voting tonight to reject the VSB budget proposals for the 2016/17 operating budget.
“We have heard from our partner groups, parents, students and members of the public that it’s is time to unite and stand up and say ‘no’ to further cuts to public schools.” says Vision Trustee Patti Bacchus.
“We invite the NPA and Green Party trustees to unite with us and reject this budget. We’ve heard over and over the proposed cuts go too far. It’s time to unite and work with government to develop a vision for education where every student gets the best possible chance to learn, grow and succeed.”
“The trustees’ job is to improve student learning — not undermine it,” says Joy Alexander. “Let’s start talking about how we can work together to make education better in our city. We’ve heard that parents, students, partner groups and our community are ready for that conversation. We are too. Let’s start now.”
“BC school boards have been grappling with funding shortfalls for over a decade. Vision Vancouver trustees believe it’s time to change course. We know our schools are great places to learn, but we must take action to keep them that way and ensure they can continue to be so,” adds Bacchus.
The Vision trustees will vote in support of the proposed Restoration Budget which states that the accumulated annual funding shortfall, compared with a base line of 2002/03, is now just under $80 million.
Stats Canada figures show that BC has among the lowest per-student funding in Canada and is approximately $1,000 per student below the national average. Vision trustees are calling on the BC government to increase public education to at least the national average, if not better. All BC students deserve this.
“Let set an example for our kids by showing them how smart, dedicated people can unite and work together to come up with good solutions to complex challenges. If we’re together, we can do this,” says Allan Wong.