Protest against government’s school plan draws UCP minister out of Edmonton office

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“I think they need to make more severe measures, like enforce smaller classes sizes,” said Pady, who added some of her classrooms at Harry Ainlay Public High School in Edmonton will have more than 30 students.

She said she wasn’t assured by Madu’s responses at the demonstration.

Rakhi Pancholi, NDP MLA for Edmonton-Whitemud, said the UCP needs to start listening to parents, students and staff who are concerned, and those concerns stem from the UCP’s funding priorities.

“There’s been minimal — almost no supports financially provided to school boards for school reopening,” she said.

Hinshaw provides advice as an employee, but her decisions are limited by government priorities, said Pancholi.

“Right now, the government could be absolutely transparent and make the recommendations of the chief medical officer of health available so that we know. I think right now (Hinshaw) is doing the best she can,” said Pancholi.

Demonstrators protesting the government's return to class plan speak with MLA Kaycee Madu outside his office during a demonstration in Edmonton, on Friday, Aug. 21, 2020. Photo by Ian Kucerak/Postmedia
Demonstrators protesting the government’s return to class plan speak with MLA Kaycee Madu outside his office during a demonstration, Aug. 21, 2020. Ian Kucerak/Postmedia

Meanwhile, LaGrange released a statement Friday shutting down the Alberta Teachers’ Association’s (ATA) call for a delay in school re-entry until after Labour Day, after she said she had follow-up discussions with the Alberta School Boards Association (ASBA) and the College of Alberta School Superintendents (CASS).

“I have also had the chance to review all the planned re-entry dates for schools across the province, and I see that time is clearly available to allow teachers to prepare for re-entry before their students arrive,” she said.


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