Thursday, January 27, 2011

Hungry for an Education - DSBN Academy

The Standard DSBN InsigniaImage via Wikipedia

The District School Board of Niagara is opening a grade 6 to grade 12 school in September that will accept only students from low income families.

Breakfast and lunch will be available as well as tutoring and mentoring.

The students need to have the academic potential to one day attend and graduate from University or College.

The number of students accepted into the 'DSBN Academy' will be limited.

I have to tell you that I'm not really comfortable with the idea.

For starters after following the years of anguish over the closing of Niagara District High School because of low enrolment, funding etc., the last thing I expected to see when I opened the St. Catharines Standard on Monday was that a new high school was opening.

Second, it isn't a very Canadian idea and that is what will take some getting used to.

In general we Canadians tend to take the 'what's best for the majority' path.

In other words, if the Board's statistics are right and 5,400 students in the district come from an impoverished background, the Canadian way wouldn't have been to pick the brightest, feed them and train them, it would have been to take that money and set up a breakfast or lunch programme across the whole district and feed something nutritious at least once a day to every child, not just the brighter ones.

It's the way of the future, I suppose.

But the whole country seems so much colder today.

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Stephen Hurley said...


I'm not totally comfortable with this idea either, for many of the same reasons that you state.

But, I have been doing some thinking (and writing) about it over the past few days.

Stephen Hurley said...


The Episcopagan said...

Thanks for letting me know about your article, Stephen. I'm not sure that I agree with 'letting parents vote with their feet' when feeding children is,(to my mind), the issue.

But your points of concern and the questions you raised knocked my socks off.

Hope some answers are forthcoming.