Save BC’s Only Democratic Public School!

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On May 13th at 9am, the Gulf Islands School District #64 will vote on a motion to close Windsor House, a public K-12 school where for almost 50 years young people have been learning to engage in democratic governance. Not only do students of all ages at Windsor House play and work together joyfully on collaborative projects, but they also negotiate important and everyday issues by using democratic processes themselves. Alumni have long heralded this unique form of personalized and social learning, having later gone on to pursue PhDs, start companies, become Rhodes Scholars and award-winning filmmakers. This is a school that ignites innovation, enables resourcefulness, and deepens both critical thinking and a sense of community responsibility.

On March 14, 2019 our school—known to regularly produce an operating surplus—was selected for closure because of what the District said was a small deficit. In 2018, the NDP-Green coalition Government of BC began to make long overdue investments in education. Closing Windsor House near the beginning of this redress would deprive our school—which exemplifies many of the best aspects of BC’s new curriculum—of that opportunity. It would be a tremendous loss to our 200 students, many of whom choose Windsor House because no other educational option works for them. It would be a loss as well for future students and families, a steady stream of whom continue to enrol in this increasingly popular educational choice.

We call on the School Board (SD #64) to keep Windsor House open and the Minister of Education to join them in continuing to support this model of schooling that excites children to learn and develop their interests and academic skills, enables them to pursue their passions, and most importantly enhances their care for one another and their world. This kind of education is designed to equip young people with the knowledge and skills needed to participate in the consolidation and strengthening of their democracies—something needed now as much as ever. Please help save our school!