To the Editor,
We need to be aware of how closing Wood Elementary School will affect the community as a whole. The community would be well advised to take into consideration what the repercussions of closing the only central elementary school will be and the detrimental effects on our young and to future developments.
Wood school served as an anchor for development in that area. It spends zero transportation dollars and will help ensure future developments are successful.
Our Official Community Plan states that future residential is earmarked in behind the hospital (south of Westhaven) and northeast of Burde Street. If development lands on the former high school site on Burde is desired for future residential, then this makes an elementary school a necessity to keep in order for development to succeed.
Families don’t put down roots for alternative education. They seek out an elementary school first and foremost.
Arguments used in securing Alberni District Secondary School to the Echo area were tied in with what is currently in the area. Shared programs between the high school and the elementary have yet to be fully realized.
The ministry is also expected to allocate capital fundings to schools where recommended in comprehensive plans.
Wood school would be looked upon by the ministry to gain capital monies to expand and bring more of our children onto this highway of learning and from our aging schools. Deleting the school goes against every trend of smart community planning, long-term transportation cost savings, co-location of parklands and community shared centres.
The highway to the future is an approach experts agree on. Wood Elem. is the first step on this highway to the future.