Statement from MPP Lisa Thompson the Halt of the PARG Process

The following is a statement from Huron-Bruce MPP Lisa Thompson on the announcement from Minister Hunter to halt the Pupil Accommodation Review Guidelines (PARG):

“Today’s announcement that pupil accommodation reviews across the province will be halted is a win for students and families in Huron-Bruce and across rural and northern Ontario. After years of my colleagues and I calling on this Liberal government to end a practice that hurts rural communities, it is interesting to note they only listened eleven months before the next election.

“Today’s announcement though, doesn’t change the fact that the Wynne Liberals have tried to make up for years of Liberal mismanagement on the backs of local schools and students. This government’s legacy is more schools closed than any other government in our province’s history. Since 2004 the Liberals have closed over 700 schools. Unfortunately, the announcement is coming too little too late for schools like Chesley District Secondary School, which is still set to close on June 30th.

“The school was also one of the few in the province to offer agriculture in the high skills major program, a program which the Minister today committed to implementing in high schools across the province.

“What the Minister needs to work on is ensuring that my Private Member’s Motion from two years ago, which called for a mandatory component on agri-food careers to be incorporated into the grades 9 and 10 Careers and Guidance curriculum, and which received support from all Parties, is implemented as soon as possible.

“We need to be ensuring that students are equipped with the skills for and knowledge of good paying jobs. The Minister needs to do better by our students.”

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