Prison is not the classroom of the future

Staff writer
February 14, 2014 01:00 AM


The research that is necessary to decide why special education teachers are needed in our classrooms is critical and needs to be addressed immediately in our public schools.

Recently the federal government announced a $6.5 million, five-year program to cut youth participation in criminal gangs. Good. But let's go further.

Will it actually help classroom teachers deal with drug use/abuse in our public schools across B.C.? If not, why?

While the right hand doesn't appear to be supporting the left hand, I see the need for a far more collaborative and cooperative program.

We continue to watch discussions erode between teachers and the B.C. government, and this is at the expense of our kids. We continue to watch the B.C. government fight with teachers even while the judge told the government to rewrite the legislation and fix the problem and pay back $2 million in damages.

The B.C. government has been violating teachers' contracts since 2002.

Pay back the $2 million in damages and let's get on with providing services for our kids who seriously need help. Public schools could offer programs that would justifiably dovetail with the federal youth gang prevention program. If the B.C. government appeals and disputes this, they will spend millions of taxpayer dollars that could well be put towards programs that would enhance health care and help our youth with addiction issues.

Youth who participate in gangs need help in the schools not only in the community. Stop appealing and start appeasing, and let's get on with quality, evidence-based drug education for our kids. Prison is not the classroom of the future.

Judith Renaud, Gibsons

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