TORONTO — NDP Education critic Marit Stiles released the following statement in response to two days of press events by Education Minister Stephen Lecce at which he made no mention of any action whatsoever to make schools safe and ready for a full reopening in September:
“Schools reopen in eight weeks. Experts agree: the hybrid learning fiasco must end and students must be back in schools, safely. Yet Stephen Lecce appears to be avoiding investment in our children, again.
There should be a massive effort underway to install improved ventilation in every classroom in Ontario. There should be a herculean hiring effort happening now to ensure small class sizes where kids can get one-on-one support when they need it, as they recover academically and emotionally from the rough year behind us.
So far, the Ford government’s cut $800 million from schools for the year, and repeatedly indicated that they want online learning to be a permanent fixture in our kids’ education.
This is no time for big cuts and bad choices on the backs of our kids — it’s time to move heaven and earth to get our kids into small, safe, well-ventilated classrooms for regular in-school learning in September.”