Qualicum Beach council backs community school trial

A plan is emerging that could save Qualicum Beach Elementary School from closure

Our health care and education systems in this country are bankrupt according to Dr. Ansel Updegrove, but creating community schools may help turn that around.

Updegrove appeared as a delegation at a Qualicum Beach council meeting Monday asking the town to write a letter to the school district board requesting the closure of Qualicum Beach Elementary School be deferred for a minimum of one year and that it become designated a community school.

“To have a more multi-purpose facility is thinking outside the box and that’s where community schools have an advantage because they’re not working under the same constraints,” he said.

Updegrove is currently working with the Health and Wellness sub-committee of the Qualicum Beach Community School Steering Committee and is a co-director of the British Columbia Chiropractic Association’s Wellness Council.

Updegrove said community schools brings in resources from the local community, they qualify for a number of grants, they improve quality of life, they bring communities together and reduce crime, among other benefits.

“We are seeing communities like Surrey that started out with one community school and now they are going district-wide.”

A Community School is open extended hours and offers services not otherwise offered in schools. It brings in people of all ages and walks of life to utilize a facility (which is the most under-utilized of all public facilities), instead of the standard 9 a.m. to 3:30 hours.

The World Health Organization has been recommending for the last 10 years to combine education and healthcare, Updegrove said, and if community schools can focus on prevention and early health intervention studies show a 17 to 1 return on investment.

“When you focus on the socialization of your community there’s an exponential increase in health, long term, for all residents.”

Councillor Bill Luchtmeijer asked if one year would be enough time to come up with a business plan.

Updegrove said they have been working diligently on the plan and should have it completed by the end of the week.

Coun. Scott Tanner echoed comments made at a rally held in Qualicum Beach Saturday.

“If you don’t try it you’ll never know if it’s going to work and that would be the message I would give to our schools trustees, give it a whirl.”

Luchtmeijer said he would like to take the motion a step forward and add that council would be prepared to work with the school board and the community school should it be designated such.

The amended motion passed unanimously.

Just Posted

Qualicum Beach dragon boating team looks for new members

Team Hot Flash was formed last year and is gearing up for second season

$3.5M all-season turf field planned for Qualicum Beach

Town seeks grant for community playing surface upgrades

Car theft suspect arrested in Coombs

Vehicle and two motorcyles recovered on Jan. 16

Qualicum Beach council big on support for multi-use cinema proposal

Society asks for 10,000 square feet, gets recommendation to consider with strategic plan

Lincoln stolen from Parksville dealership found near Duncan

Vehicle was located three days later with minor damage

Fashion Fridays: Inspirational gym outfits

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Inflation rises as higher airfares, veggie prices offset cheaper gas

Statistics Canada says inflation accelerated to two per cent in December

Social media strains over Prince Rupert’s boil water notice

Resident forms Community for Clean Water, and Jennifer Rice responds to acting mayor’s comments

Dog dies saving B.C. family from burning home

Homeonwers safe but one pet missing, another confirmed dead following fire

Investigators await forensics in fatal Mill Bay police shooting

Independent investigation continues after Chris Bloomfield killed in Mill Bay in November

Minor mattress fire could have killed, Nanaimo Fire Rescue warns

Public fire safety warnings issued following potentially deadly fire on Victoria Road

Russian fighter jets collide over Sea of Japan crews eject

One plane crashed after its crew ejected safely, the other crew also ejected but they have not been found

Judge to deliver verdict in British sailor’s gang rape case

The alleged gang rape took place at a Halifax-area military base in 2015

B.C. minister fears money laundering involves billions of dollars, cites reports

The government had estimated that it was a $200-million a year operation, instead estimates now peg the problem at $1 billion annually

Most Read