The School District 70 administration office in Port Alberni. AV NEWS FILE PHOTO

School District 70 proposes new school names, asks for public feedback

Board of education suggests new names for the district and two of its schools

The board of education for School District 70 has proposed several new names for the district and two of its schools.

READ MORE: Alberni School District considers three name changes

Trustees have been searching for a new name for the school district as a whole that better represents the region. They have proposed that SD70 (Alberni) become either SD70 (Pacific Rim) or SD70 (Alberni-Pacific Rim).

“At a district level, trustees understand that following amalgamation with SD79 (Ucluelet-Tofino) in 1970, the name ‘Alberni’ has failed to capture the geographic diversity served by the district,” said Pam Craig, board chair, in a press release.

Trustees have also proposed that Ucluelet Secondary School (USS) be renamed Pacific Rim Secondary School or West Coast Secondary School because it serves students all along the West Coast.

“Currently, USS is in the early stages of seismic renovations and upgrades that will essentially result in a new secondary school, suggesting the time is right to consider a new school name that reflects its entire catchment area,” said Craig.

Finally, trustees have proposed that AW Neill Elementary School become either Compton Elementary School or Kitsuksis Elementary School.

READ MORE: Reconciliation at heart of move to rename Neill Elementary School

“Much discussion has taken place about the values and actions of A.W. Neill and whether or not AW Neill Elementary School should continue to bear this individual’s name,” Craig explained.

The names suggested are in keeping with the school district’s new administrative procedure, which outlines the criteria and process by which schools are named or renamed.

READ MORE: SD70 trustees adopt ‘naming of schools’ policy

The board of education will make a final decision in the spring of 2020. In the meantime, trustees have asked for feedback from the public. Email namechange@sd70.bc.ca to let trustees know if you support the name changes, which names you prefer or if you have an alternate name for consideration.

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