Coldstream Elementary grandfathering proceeds

Parents of existing children affected to be informed of eligibility by June 30

A board of education motion has a Coldstream grandfather on cloud nine.

The motion, put forward by School District 22 (Vernon) trustee Robert Lee at a past meeting, suggests that the board approve the grandfathered parents of the existing children affected by the Coldstream boundary adjustment be informed of their eligibility to attend Coldstream Elementary by June 30.

“I think there have been seven children identified as such. I don’t think we as a board want parents to be twisting in the wind,” Lee said as his motion was brought up for consideration.

Last year, the district changed the boundaries impacting the lower Middleton and Creekside areas and removed them from the Coldstream catchment to place them in the Kidston catchment to balance out the over-capacity Coldstream Elementary with the under-utilized Kidston Elementary.

Related: Parents protest Coldstream school changes

At a September 2017 board meeting, trustees voted to allow for grandfathering at Coldstream Elementary, provided there is enough space for incoming catchment students.

However, Lee said, parents need adequate time to prepare their children instead of saying, “I don’t know what school you will be going to, might be this one, might be that one.”

Trustee Lisa de Boer agreed.

“If you look at the sequence of events, you have a family that moved into catchment, and because of growth, we changed the boundary,” she said. “At no fault of these families, they have been, as trustee Lee said, ‘twisting in the wind.’ I think it would (help) these families affected who have already been through much.”

Lee’s motion was approved by unanimous vote.

“I would like to thank the board for making the motion for grandfathering at Coldstream Elementary,” said Mike Parent. “I’m a grandfather and you’ve just made a five-year-old very happy.”

Budget bylaw approved

The district’s 2018-19 budget plan, written into bylaw at a past meeting, has been given a final reading.

Secretary-treasurer Sterling Olson said the district expects to end off the 2017-18 year with a surplus between $400,000 and $1 million. Of that surplus, $403,000 has been put towards a one-time balancing of offsets in the 2018-19.

That decision, made at a past meeting, was to allow trustees more time to decide on potential bus route optimization.

Related: Vernon school bus route cuts postponed

“So if the board doesn’t end the year with at least $403,000 in operating surplus, we would have to take a look at the plan,” Olson said.


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