Parksville high school sits near bottom of Fraser Institute’s rankings

Local teachers’ union prez doesn’t give list credence

The Fraser Institute’s latest report card on schools is out, and local high schools didn’t fare well.

The report looked at 293 secondary schools in the province. Kwalikum Secondary School placed 204th, Ballenas Secondary School 266th.

Mount Arrowsmith Teachers’ Association president Debbie Morran said she doesn’t give the report card much credence. She said the same when the Fraser Institute released its report card on elementary schools earlier this year, rankings based mostly on the results of provincially-mandated Foundation Skills Assessment (FSA) tests taken by students in grades 4 and 7. The only other time B.C. students write FSA exams is in Grade 10.

“I think it’s even more difficult to lend any weight to the (high school) standings when it’s only Grade 10 students writing (the FSA tests),” said Morran.

However, the Fraser Institute says it bases its high-school rankings on provincial exams — not the Grade 10 FSAs —  which are written by all students in grades 10, 11 and 12. The institute’s report card lists what it says is “average exam marks” for students. At Kwalikum in 2013 that was 68 per cent, while at Ballenas it was 66.3 per cent. The institute’s ratings system (out of 10) had Kwalikum at 5.2 and Ballenas at 3.7.

Kwalikum had 130 Grade 12 students in 2013. Only 0.7 per cent of those students were classified as English as a Second Language (ESL) students and 10.4 per cent were special needs. Ballenas had 182 Grade 12 students in 2013, 0.9 per cent ESL and 12.7 per cent special needs.

Ballenas also had 12.7 per cent of its students classified as French Immersion students.

The Fraser Institute describes itself as an independent Canadian public policy research and educational organization with offices in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, and Montreal and ties to a global network of 86 think-tanks. It says its mission is to measure, study, and communicate the impact of competitive markets and government intervention on the welfare of individuals.

The local teachers’ association president was asked if there was any system, any kind of check and balance, that taxpayers could rely on if they wanted some kind of tax-dollar-for-service evaluation.

“That’s why they elect a board of trustees,” said Morran. “That is their role. They are the guardians of that tax dollar.”

Just Posted

Qualicum man sentenced for tying up, robbing another man

Gabriel Stephen Nelson robbed and assaulted travelling businessman in 2017

Parksville man ‘parks’ horse during liquor store pit stop

As long as animal wasn’t jaywalking, no problem, says city official

Parksville roundtable highlights need for affordable housing, recreation

Mayor Ed Mayne held facilitated event in January to hear visions for city, council

RDN to form new group to replace Northern committees

Recreation commissioners disappointed with the decision

Second delivery of building units for 222 Corfield in Parksville arrives March 21

Vehicles should expect intermittent single-lane alternating traffic

VIDEO: Can you believe it? This B.C. hill pulls cars backwards up a slope

Sir Isaac Newton had clearly never been to this Vernon anomaly when he discovered gravity

Canucks hang on for 7-4 win over Senators

Horvat nets 2 for Vancouver

European, Canadian regulators to do own review of Boeing jet

Air Canada plans to remove the Boeing 737 Max from its schedule at least through July 1

Prime minister defends Liberal budget measures as sales effort gets underway

Conservatives under Andrew Scheer say it’s a spree funded by borrowing against the future

Mayor meets with B.C. health minister on homeless taxi transfers

Two homeless people were discharged from Surrey Memorial and sent to a Chilliwack shelter

B.C. lottery winner being sued by co-workers

They claim he owes them $200,000 each, in a lawsuit filed in B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver

Teacher reprimanded for conduct towards special needs student

Alan Stephen Berry told vice principal he did not have time to use positive strategies

‘Full worm super moon’ to illuminate B.C. skies on first day of spring

Spring has sprung, a moon named in honour of thawing soil marks final super moon until 2020

Having phone within sight while driving does not violate law: B.C. judge

The mere presence of a cell phone within sight of a driver is not enough for a conviction, judge says

Most Read