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Petition launched to save Queen Elizabeth and Pinecrest schools

UPDATE: Petition now available regarding Pinecrest School in Bloomfield as well.

A call to save Queen Elizabeth Public School in Picton is under way as parents and residents who oppose the recently-announced closure are being asked to sign a petition to be sent to the Ministry of Education.

Changes and closures finalized at the June 19 meeting of the Hastings Prince Edward District School Board do not qualify for inclusion in the temporary halt on school closings announced last week by Education Minister Mitzie Hunter.

Hunter made the call following 10 meetings in rural and northern communities in the province – including one held here – to halt any future closing in the province as the process is overhauled. Her announcement means boards cannot start any new reviews, except in cases where two boards are proposing shared space.

The announcement does not help the finalized closure of Pinecrest in Bloomfield and Queen Elizabeth School in Picton, in 2018, as Prince Edward Collegiate becomes a K-12 school.

Monday, a local group of concerned parents and County residents – The Prince Edward County Alliance for Rural Education – began seeking signatures for a petition located at Kelly’s Shop on Main Street, Picton.

“We believe that the HPEDSB failed to follow its own policy during the accommodation review – not providing anywhere near enough information before, during or after the process for anyone involved to make an informed decision,” said JJ Syer, who served as a member of the ARC committee formed for Queen Elizabeth School. “We are requesting that the Ministry of Education perform an administrative review on the closure. We need signatures from parents of Queen Elizabeth students, or from anyone who participated in the accommodation review – attending a meeting, writing in, serving on the ARC, etc. – equal to 30 per cent of the student population.”

A letter to Hunter that is to accompany the petition requests an administrative review of the accommodation review process for the school.

It states petitioners believe the board did not follow its review policy in several ways noting “The board consistently failed to provide relevant, or accurate material regarding the financial rationale for closure, transportation times, programming changes, the facility plan, safety concerns and other vital issues.”

The full document is available by contacting The Prince Edward County Alliance for Rural Education on Facebook.

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  1. lou says:

    there is a petition for Pinecrest too!

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