The education system is in bad shape: YP

The number of issues and concerns related to Yukon’s education system continued to mount over the summer, the Yukon Party said Thursday.

By Whitehorse Star on August 19, 2022

The number of issues and concerns related to Yukon’s education system continued to mount over the summer, the Yukon Party said Thursday.

The government, meanwhile, countered that the opposition party was simply trying to stoke fears and division.

“Unfortunately, there has been a lack of leadership from the Minister of Education (Jeanie McLean), or any member of cabinet, for that matter, as these issues come to a head on the eve of the start of the school year. school,” the party said. said in a statement.

Concerns about vacancies have been raised publicly by Ted Hupe, president of the Yukon Association of Education Professionals, teachers, school councils and communities, the official opposition added.

“Teacher shortages and a lack of planning by the Liberal government has led to a number of vacancies in schools across the territory at the start of the new school year and reports of principals being left without support to recruit staff. said the Yukon Party.

“To fill the gaps, there are reports of patchwork solutions forcing staff to take up positions outside of their specialty.

“It seems that these concerns are unfortunately becoming a reality, and this is another indication that this Liberal government has simply verified.

While critical staffing shortages are a major problem in the North, the party added, “the lack of leadership and action by this Liberal government is an ongoing concern in the Yukon.”

In a January letter to McLean, the educators’ association, Autism Yukon, the LDAY Center for Learning and the Association of Yukon School Councils Boards and Committees “said that no substantive action had been taken during of the past two years in inclusive and special education”. noted the YP.

“Due to poor planning and coordination, students in Dawson City will start their year a few days later. Laptop upgrades at Robert Service School — first suggested by the Yukon Party in 2017 — won’t be completed until the school year starts on time.

In Whitehorse, the party added, “there are very visible large infrastructure projects at Elijah Smith Elementary School, Hidden Valley Elementary School and Selkirk Elementary School that will not be completed when the children will return to class on Monday.”

“We hear from those on the ground that the education system in the Yukon has never been in worse shape,” said Education Critic Scott Kent.

“For a government that claims to make education a priority, it seems Yukon educators, students and parents are bearing the brunt of the Liberals’ failure to address these concerns over the summer.

Cabinet communications staff released a statement on the concerns of the Yukon Party on Thursday afternoon.

“Once again we see the Yukon Party promoting fear and division. It is great that the Yukon Party is now taking an interest in education issues in our territory,” the statement read.

“It would have been better if they had an interest in fixing them for the 14 years they were in government.

“Across the country — not just in the North — jurisdictions are experiencing education staffing shortages,” the firm added.

“It’s also not uncommon for there to be assignments and vacancies at the start of each school year. We continue to work closely with the very dedicated and hardworking school administration staff to prepare all Yukon schools to welcome students for another school year.

“There is nothing more important than the success of our students.

Students in the Dawson area have benefited from an extended summer vacation due to sewer and water construction work at their school.

The year 2022-23 was due to start yesterday.

However, “the progress of several school construction projects has impacted the ability of the school to open safely and to allow school staff to be ready to receive students,” informed Wednesday Marilyn Marquis-Forster, zone superintendent for the Department of Education.

As with most Yukon schools, Dawson’s school year will now begin on Monday.

“We recognize that learning has been interrupted over the past three school years, and it is important that students have a full school year,” added Marquis-Forster.

“In the coming days, we will be working closely with the school council, the school administration and the Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in to determine the best approach to make up for this learning time.

“Thank you for your patience as we go through this situation.”

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