School boards: Former MNA worried about Bill 40

News source from CTV News

MONTREAL – Former MNA Geoff Kelley on Monday criticized the Quebec government’s bill that would abolish school boards.

In an interview with CTV Montreal’s Caroline Van Vlaardingen, Kelley said Bill 40 was too complicated and left too many questions unanswered.

“It’s important to keep parents involved, but we can’t make participation in our school system too complicated,” the former MNA explained.

Bill 40 would replace school boards with service centres whose members would be elected. But Kelley worried that some of the government’s proposed changes would lead to too many parents volunteering their time.

When Kelley questioned Education Minister Jean-Francois Roberge recently, the minister’s response was disturbing, Kelley said.

“He said, ‘oh, don’t worry about the additional work that the parents will have to do on these new boards of these service centres because they won’t decide anything,’ well, that raises important constitutional issues. It says in the Canadian constitution that the English community has the right to control and manage its school system.”

Kelley is the chairperson of the Alliance for the promotion of public English-language education in Quebec, (APPELE).

The group is hosting its own public hearings into Bill 40 on Tuesday after it said some community representatives were not asked to speak in front of the National Assembly Committee studying the bill.

“Only about four or five groups from the English community were called to speak in Quebec City. So we’re going to hear from other groups,” Kelley said.  

Watch the video above for more.



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