To the Editor,
Re: Parents begin campaign against possible school closures, Aug. 27.
Nanaimo-Ladysmith School District trustees will hear further information regarding school closures this month. I wish to add to that data.
North Nanaimo is currently experiencing great growth, including the 600-unit Linley Valley development. The projected enrolment figures being presented to the public do not include these developments. If Rutherford is closed, remaining schools will be over capacity resulting in the need for portables at multiple sites. This is not acceptable. This is not responsible planning and I do not believe this is the legacy the current board of trustees wish to leave.
In 2013, Nanaimo school district hired Doug Player, an experienced and respected educator, to develop an enhanced facility plan. His results presented in June 2014 included that Rutherford’s population “will remain within the optimal school size guidelines.” His report called for the rebuilding of Rutherford school, a far cry from closing it.
He stated that Rutherford’s site was among the very best in the province. He recognized and honoured that Rutherford was a vital and necessary school within the district. It is difficult to understand whatever could have changed within 12 short months.
School closures is a very emotional topic. However, I believe the very clear facts and data regarding Rutherford school support keeping it open and thriving. I ask that the trustees remove Rutherford’s name from the list of possible closures.