Axe dangles over another St. Thomas school

The London-centered school board is ready to close another city school in 2011. Here’s the details from Kelly Pedro at the Free Press.

Senior administrators recommended tonight that area public board trustees close a St. Thomas elementary school.

After a so-called accommodation review committee report, staff are recommending Balaclava St. public school close and pupils there be folded into Edward Street public school, which will convert from a junior kindergarten to Grade 6 school to the Thames Valley District school board’s preferred junior kindergarten to Grade 8 model.

If approved, Balaclava would close in June 2011.

Staff are also recommending pupils who live north of Talbot St. and attend Scott St. public school – which is already slated to close – be transferred to Edward St., which will be renovated. Staff project that renovation would cost about $4.8 million and enrolment for 2011-12 is 349.

Locke’s public school would also be renovated to handle pupils from the Dalewood subdivision. Staff project that renovation would cost $4.1 million and enrolment for 2011-12 is 523.

Those recommendations, if approved, would take effect in September 2011.

After this ARC, all pupils in St. Thomas will be moved into the board’s preferred junior kindergarten to Grade 8 model in the next few years.

The public now has a chance to speak out about the senior administration’s recommendation before trustees vote on the issue Dec. 15.

Ethanol subsidies a useless boondoggle

Ethanol is the gift that keeps on giving – but only to corn-growers and opportunistic automakers. For taxpayers, however, it’s a dream that failed and a rat-hole down which our governments keep pouring our tax money. This useless boondoggle must stop.

Last week, CanWest News Service reported on a government memo that says clearly that Ottawa’s costly effort to promote E85 fuel – industry shorthand for 85 per cent ethanol and 15 per cent ordinary gasoline – will do no good.

In fact, we believe the whole push for ethanol – produced mainly from corn in Canada – will bring no actual reductions in total greenhouse gas emissions, but will cost taxpayers $2.2 billion in federal subsidies, plus more from provinces, especially Ontario.
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