School District 91 organized a meeting on May 8 at William Konkin Elementary in Burns Lake to propose a new form of the Professional Learning Communities program, however only a small number of parents attended. (Lakes District News file photo)

Low turnout at SD91 meeting irritates parents

An attempt by School District 91 (SD91) to inform the public in Burns Lake about a new educational program left many parents frustrated.

Officials from SD91 had called a meeting on May 8 at William Konkin Elementary (WKE) to propose a new form of the Professional Learning Communities (PLC) program.

However, the meeting was poorly attended and some Burns Lake parents who were at the event said officials hadn’t properly publicized it and very few people showed up.

The PLC scheme involves teachers meeting together at various times for professional development to explore ways to enhance students’ learning experience.

In Burns Lake, PLCs have been in place at WKE and Lakes District Secondary School for several years. In the wider region the program is also done in Fort St.James, Smithers and Prince George.

SD91 has been running PLCs since 2014.

The meeting at WKE was held so that a new model in which students would be sent home early on PLC days could be proposed to the parents, said Mike Skinner, assistant superintendent with SD91.

Skinner admitted that the meeting’s execution was inadequate.

“Given the low turnout at the meeting, it was evident that our efforts have fallen short for advertising and sharing information. After reflecting, we are renewing our consultation process to ensure broad parental involvement that includes several more opportunities and ways to provide feedback,” he explained.

“This will include proposal information and a survey on each school website and at least one more parent meeting. The consultation process will continue into the fall of 2019.”

In the PLC model currently used at schools in Burns Lake, students are dismissed from class early but remain at school and are supervised in various activities by support staff.

The school board is proposing the shift to the new model so that “support staff can spend more time with teachers and so that there are more opportunities for cross-school collaboration between teachers,” Skinner said.

Schools in Fort St.James went through a consultation process for the new model and began piloting it in January of 2018. They have been running the released-from-school model every month since then, for one afternoon per month.

Skinner said that more information about the proposal will be posted in a week or 10 days on each school’s website.

But some residents are already unsure about the new bid and are eager to learn more because they worry that sending students home early will put pressure on working parents.


Blair McBride
Multimedia reporter
Send Blair an email
Like Lakes District News on Facebook

Just Posted

CN train derailment cleared between Terrace and Prince Rupert

The CN mainline is now open, following a train derailment mid-way between… Continue reading

Trial finishes for suspect in Burns Lake man’s murder

Closing submissions concluded at the Supreme Court in Prince George on July… Continue reading

Lightning starts nine small fires on July 5-7

Several wildfires started in the Northwest Fire Centre region over the July… Continue reading

Mill blast safety measures review ends

The government is wrapping up a review on how industries and other… Continue reading

Know the rules before towing a recreational trailer

Motorists towing a recreational trailer this summer should be aware of the… Continue reading

VIDEO: Young couple found dead in northern B.C. had been shot, police say

Chynna Noelle Deese of the U.S. and Lucas Robertson Fowler of Australia were found along Highway 97

VIDEO: Man found dead near B.C. teens’ truck could be linked to a double homicide

RCMP said they are looking for Kam McLeod, 19, and Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, of Port Alberni

Latest plan is to fly trapped fish by helicopter over Big Bar slide

Multi-pronged plan set in motion to freesalmon blocked by landslide in the Fraser River

Family of missing B.C. senior with dementia frustrated with situation, heartened by community support

Nine days since Grace was last seen the question remains: ‘How can an 86-year-old just disappear?’

Unsealed record suggests U.S. man convicted of murdering Vancouver Island couple left DNA on zip tie in 1987

William Talbott is set to be sentenced Wednesday in the murders of Jay Cook and Tanya Van Cuylenborg

Coast Tsimshian sign historic stewardship agreement

Lax Kw’alaams and Metlakatla plan to work as one to preserve traditional lands

Okanagan Air Cadet challenges gender-exclusive haircut policy

Haircut regulation inspires challenge around gender identity

VIDEO: Bystander training gains traction as tool to prevent sexual harassment, violence

Julia Gartley was sexually assaulted after an event, and no one stepped in to help

Two brands of ice cream sandwiches recalled due to presence of metal

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency issued a recall on Iceberg and Originale Augustin brands

Most Read