Families are being encouraged to attend an open house on Monday, April 3, to share their ideas on how to transform rural education in British Columbia.
Ministry of Education staff will host the event at Revelstoke Secondary School from 5 pm to 7 pm (the time was changed on Thursday, March 16, from 6 pm – 8 pm by ministry staff). This is the same event that was postponed last week due to a highway closure at Three Valley.
A statement from the ministry said families and organizations can “express their thoughts on rural education, sharing stories around the importance of rural schools and rural educational programs in a casual setting.”
This open house is part of a public engagement process to help develop a rural education strategy by this summer, it said.
“The public can comment on the draft discussion paper summarizing what was heard from the first phase of rural education engagement, which included an online survey and discussion forum at http://engage.gov.bc.ca/ruraleducation,” the statement said. “More than 100 British Columbians shared their thoughts during the initial engagement through the survey. Over 250 comments were made on the rural education blog.”
All feedback received will help government shape a final report on an integrated rural education strategy, including recommendations for the future. The strategy will aim to find long-term solutions for the unique challenges facing rural school districts and communities, including looking at the important social, cultural and economic roles that schools play for small communities.
About 32% of the students in the K-12 education system attend schools located outside of the greater Victoria, Lower Mainland and Kelowna areas – many in very small communities that use school facilities as a hub for community activities.