School reviews must consider more than education, says Green leader

School review process 'had a lot of disrespect for people,' says Pat Mella

One of the failings of the just-ended school review process on P.E.I. was the Public Schools Branch considered only educational factors, says Island Green Party Leader Peter Bevan-Baker.

Future reviews need to explicitly include the impact closing a school could have on a community. If or when P.E.I. goes down this path again, said Bevan-Baker, decisions should be made by a group that includes local community leaders.

"People who are looking out for the overall well-being of the community," said Bevan-Baker.

"That's a new concept, that idea that a school is not isolated as just a learning institution, but it's a living, breathing part of a vital community."

The schools review left people angry and mistrustful of government, he said.

In question period Tuesday, Premier Wade MacLauchlan told the legislature the process was designed to ensure students receive the best education possible.

He acknowledged the Public Schools Branch may have better ideas as to how this should work in the future.

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