Pallister Government Kills NDP Bill That Would Have Provided School Stability for Children in CFS Care

The Pallister government has voted down an NDP bill that would have gone a long way to providing stability in the lives of children in CFS care, Education Critic Wab Kinew said today.

“This bill would have ensured that children who’ve been taken into care would have been able to stay in the same school as before they were in care,” Kinew said. “It can be traumatizing for children who have left their families to also be taken from their familiar schools and classmates. Why would the government not want to reduce the stresses on children?”

When children are taken into care for their safety, they can often find themselves placed with a family living in a different school division or district. Under The Public Schools Act, a pupil who ceases to reside in a school division or school district ceases to be a resident pupil of that division or district.

Bill 208, The Public Schools Amendment Act, would have allowed children to stay in their original schools even if they are placed with a family in a different division or district. The Pallister government unanimously voted against it.

“Our bill would have provided children with a familiar environment, kept them with friends and familiar teachers and would have prevented any interruption in their courses,” Wab said. “Moving to a new school tears children away from familiar bonds and forces them to start over. That makes it tougher to concentrate on their schooling and sets them up for failure. It’s unconscionable that the government would not support this.”