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WHITEHORSE – The Yukon’s Minister of Education is holding a media availability Tuesday afternoon in which she will provide remarks and take questions.
The Yukon Party Official Opposition hopes she will take the opportunity to respond to the many issues facing the Yukon’s education system.
The Hidden Valley Elementary School Community has been asking for supports for over a year as they recover from the sexual abuse that occurred at their school. How is the minister ensuring the school is fully staffed? As requested by the School Council, is a full-time vice-principal as well as a clinical counsellor in place? Is this school community getting the adequate support as promised by the Minister?
Across the Yukon, schools are facing shortages with teachers, Educational Assistants, and Teachers on Call, as well as a lack of overall support. Some students who arrived to begin the school year found they did not have a teacher and were sent home. Other students discovered an Educational Assistant or Learning Assistance Teacher at the head of the classroom, leaving vulnerable students without the supports they require.
Major infrastructure projects were not completed in time for the start of school at Elijah Smith Elementary, Hidden Valley Elementary School and Ecole Selkirk Elementary. There has been an overall lack of communication, and non-response from the Minister to questions from various schools communities about these many issues.
Recently, the president of the Yukon Association of Educational Professionals told local media ‘there is no plan’ for the education system, and he has never seen a situation like this before. The president also called on the government to step up recruitment efforts. The comments come as teachers are pressing the government to resolve disputes around back pay, and layoffs and recalls.
It is high time the Minister of Education address these critical issues facing students, teachers, school staff, parents and the entire education system.