It’s a new year, which means we are on to a new year of Whistler’s Answers!
In the 1980s the Whistler Question began posing a question to three to six people and publishing their responses under “Whistler’s Answers” (not to be confused with the Whistler Answer). Each week, we’ll be sharing one question and the answers given back in 1983. Please note, all names/answers/occupations/neighbourhoods represent information given to the Question at the time of publishing and do not necessarily reflect the person today.
Some context for this week’s question: In the midst of a recession in the early 1980s, the Ministry of Education cut back the funding to school boards. For the Howe Sound School Board (today SD 48 (Sea to Sky)), this meant cutting almost $700,000 from its budget in 1983. 37 teachers’ aides were let go and five teachers and services and programs were scaled back.
Question: Do you think the school board budget cuts have been reasonable?
Alexander Fordham – Grade One Student – Whiski Jack
I like the field trips we go on. Last year our class saw the firehall and the Children’s Festival. Now I know about those things. Mrs. King (teachers’ aide) helps me with my work a lot too. It’s too bad she will go.
Bob Daly – School Principal – Alpine Meadows
It makes no difference how they institute cutbacks because someone is always going to feel it. The board had to come up with a list of priorities. Teaching was at the top of that list and things farthest down on the list are the first to go. Unfortunately this meant the end of extra help and field trips, but there’s not really any other way they could do this.
Melanie Causton – Village Employee – Pemberton
Reading, writing and arithmetic are not all there is to a child’s education. I think the board should take a long look at other ways of cutting back before they eliminate field trips and other social activities which make up a big part of education. There might, for example, be certain other fringes the schools could do without.