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McInroy's Remarks Draw Criticism from Council Colleague

(Thursday, February 15/2001)-- Councillor Brian Warshick has taken exception to remarks by his colleague Councillor Harry McInroy regarding schools closures and municipal funding to schools boards.

District 6 Councillor Warshick (Westphal/Waverley Road) said today that if Councillor McInroy had taken more time to learn about the Halifax Regional School Board's process to determine school closures, he would realize that the system was flawed.

Councillor McInroy stated in a news release yesterday that the School Board will be hard pressed to explain to Halifax Regional Council why it so desperately needs more Supplementary Education Funding, "while it continues to pump education dollars into empty classrooms".

He was commenting on a decision by the School Board this week not to close a number of underpopulated schools in Halifax and Dartmouth. Councillor McInroy said that sends a clear signal that the Board does not have the "intestinal fortitude" to make the difficult decisions that need to be made to get its financial house in order.

Councillor Warshick said the review committee, by its own admission, said the school review process was flawed, because members did not have enough time or enough relevant information to make "informed" decisions about the appropriate action to recommend.

He said the review committee only had one option-- total school closure-- as opposed to closing out a floor or a number of classrooms, in an underpopulated building.

"The time frame for a proper school review is too short and the committee didn't have the answers to a number of relevant questions to make the best decisions. For instance, there was no information about the impact of school closures, such as the cost of busing students, or the alternative of renovating the buildings under review to make them more efficient and cheaper to operate, " he said.

Councillor Warshick that he had more than 70 calls from constituents who were opposed to the proposed closure of Mary Lawson School in his District.

"Also, I attended both meetings regarding the closure of Mary Lawson and I don't recall seeing Councillor McInroy at either of these meetings. Maybe if Councillor McInroy offered the schools in his District up for review, he might have a different option regarding school closures, " Councillor Warshick said.

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Councillor Brian Warshick
(902) 435-8476 (H)
(902) 488-3800 (cell)

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