UPDATE: Nanaimo school board votes to close schools

NANAIMO – Shuttering of Rutherford Elementary School in 2017 is amongst proposals Nanaimo school district's board approved.

Nanaimo school district’s board approved school closures at a special board meeting Wednesday night.

Among the schools trustees voted to close, Rutherford Elementary School. At a business committee meeting Tuesday night, a recommendation to shutter the north end school narrowly passed 5-4.

Trustees Steve Rae, Stephanie Higginson, Jeff Solomon, Natasha Bob and Bill Robinson voted in favour at the business meeting, while Jamie Brennan, Tania Brzovic, Scott Kimler and Noah Routley voiced dissent.

The district said it is facing a $2.7-million structural deficit and Rae, school board chairman, said the decision was very difficult, but the district has to find a way to move forward, which unfortunately comes with school closures.

“The alternative, if we don’t close schools, is to lay off our workers, cut programs, and that affects the classroom directly,” said Rae.

Rutherford closure is contingent on Ministry of Education funding for Frank J. Ney Elementary expansion to accommodate more students, and that hasn’t been approved. Rae said the ministry won’t consider expansion without a business plan.

The district has met with the ministry and while there isn’t money for large capital projects, Ney school expansion isn’t considered that, Rae said.

“So what will happen now is our staff will put together a business case [and] will contact the ministry and the ministry will let us know relatively quickly whether or not they feel that we’re on the right track. If they refuse this, it’s over. The school stays open,” said Rae.

The board also backed staff recommendations to close Woodlands Secondary School, move Woodbank Primary students to North Cedar Intermediate in 2016 to form Cedar Elementary.


Just Posted

UPDATE: Suspect and Mountie bitten by police dog during arrest south of Nanaimo

Two suspects were arrested in connection with a stolen pickup truck in Cassidy on Thursday evening

City to re-name community policing office and keep it open

Council votes 6-2 for city to maintain a presence at Victoria Crescent office

Nanaimo RCMP seek help finding missing Nanaimo boy

Chaas Mearns, 13, was reported missing Jan. 30

Construction set to begin on Nanaimo airport terminal expansion

First phase of construction project to begin in March or April

Duncan family says care home switched mom’s cat with robot cat

Staff alleged to have said they were taking cat for bath, then replaced her with robotic stuffed toy

VIDEO: Buccaneers double up Generals to win Game 2

Nanaimo now leads the best-of-seven series against Oceanside two games to none

Beefs & Bouquets, Feb. 22

To submit a beef or a bouquet to the Nanaimo News Bulletin, e-mail bulletinboard@nanaimobulletin.com

More snow forecast to fall Friday on Vancouver Island

Environment Canada calling for 2-10 centimetres on the east coast of the Island and areas inland

VIDEO: Buccaneers double up Generals to win Game 2

Nanaimo now leads the best-of-seven series against Oceanside two games to none

Indigenous elders share history with Nanaimo-Ladysmith School District students

‘Our kids learning their history through elders is nothing that we can find in our textbooks’

UPDATE: One driver taken to hospital after three-vehicle collision in Harewood

Accident happened at Howard Avenue and Seventh Street at about 9:30 a.m.

B.C. ski cross racer wins Olympic gold

Kelowna’s Kelsey Serwa wins the gold medal in thrilling fashion in PyeongChang

New charges against ex-Trump campaign associates

More charges were laid Thursday against President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman and his business associate

Man accused in death of Winnipeg teen Tina Fontaine not guilty

Raymond Cormier was accused of killing Indigenous 15-year-old and dumping her body in the Red River

Most Read