Alreadt, this fall’s civic election has sparked a few surprises. The first being the astounding number of people willing to put their names forward to represent us at the various levels of local government.
The second surprise is, how few people took an interest in attending the first school district trustee candidates forum.
Why this is surprising is the fact that the school board’s announcement last year that Kwalikum Secondary School could be closed, sparked a massive outcry from parents, students and teachers. And yet, the first trustee forum — which was well advertised — drew only enough people to fill a third of the available seats.
In a way, those empty chairs are indicative of how people have treated the school board for the last few years. With neglect.
Then, when important decisions have to be made — or school closure reports are commissioned and paid for — there’s a welling up of interest that, sadly, is all to quick to subside.
We hear that parents are too busy with one thing or another, to pay close attention to the school board. Fair enough — they’ve made their choices and set their priorities.
And yet, all it takes to know more about what the school board does with its $40 million-plus budget is to ask a few questions. Make attending a public meeting once in a while a priority. Hold those we elect to that board accountable.
People are complaining in the streets about how their interests are not represented and that they have no idea what their elected officials are up to and therefore feel disenfranchised.
It’s hard to feel sorry for them. Even in a democracy, people make their excuses. — editorial by Steven Heywood