Not much democracy left in boards

Opinion
Pictou-Advocate-opinion

To the Editor:

It is a sad time in our small province as democracy slips away. First the Health Authority where all key decisions are now made in secrecy in a tower in Halifax. Local communities across this province seek answers, seek doctors, seek emergency rooms that are open. But not to worry, some very ‘smart’ people at the Health Authority are secretly planning a wonderful future for health care in this province. And they are far ‘smarter’ than local people in those same communities.

Next on the list is education. All in the name of better test scores, we are about to let slip away a historical part of our democracy, school boards. Our government is about to appoint (goodbye elected people) a group of very ‘smart’ people that will also sit in Halifax and make very ‘smart’ decisions, much superior to what local people could make. Really?

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This is happening right NOW and we’re just going to quietly sit by and let it happen again! Shame on us! All because we’ve been groomed for the last 20 years to dislike and/or disregard elected school boards by our very own elected governments and their bureaucratic bosses at the Department of Education.

Democracy may be messy, but it’s the best we’ve got. I would far rather trust my friends and neighbours to make good local decisions for our children than bureaucrats in a Halifax tower! Let them do their job of planning and designing the best educationally and then let local folks incorporate it in their own communities. So what, we’re not all the same across the province, we’re not in many ways, and that’s not a bad thing!

Robert Parker

Central West River

(former school board member for 13 years)

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