McNeil: Locking schools ‘will provide education’

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Above: Stephen McNeil announces Nova Scotia’s new ‘Enduring Closed Opportunities Initiative’

NS Education Department will ‘provide the experience that students need to endure jail time and lost opportunities’

Premier Stephen McNeil says he understands the issues parents face in Nova Scotia.

On Saturday, he sought to reassure Nova Scotians on the province’s move to lock public schools, telling reporters ‘Locking schools is the best way to provide our students with preparatory experience, in the view of our expert panels.

Students from Dartmouth’s North End, Spryfield students, kids from rural Cape Breton – we all know the increasingly bad performance of their schools isn’t enough to prepare them for the experience of having opportunities closed off to them.

So we’re deciding to give them a head start – by letting them see doors locking in their face before it becomes a permanent condition.’

According to education consultant Dr. Eli Wasserbaum, the province’s move is long overdue.

‘Students have been both let down and coddled at the same time’, Dr. Wasserbaum said. ‘Now, the province has decided to take the cheaper option with both hands, instead of only doing it partway. This will allow students to adjust their expectations so that when it’s time for them to enter jails or social assistance queues, they will be somewhat numbed to the experience.’

Education Minister Karen Casey denied the move will negatively impact students.

‘We are committed to providing students with a first-rate education,’ she told CTV News. ‘This will allow children to do their learning outside the classroom, where neither they nor personnel will have to deal with attention deficits.’

When asked about the suggestion that this was a gross misapplication of educational theory, Casey stated ‘the Liberal government is committed to commit to our children. We have been open about that from Day One. Never can this government be accused of failing to commit to future commitment. This is one thing we will commit to.’

 

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