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Kenney also said it’s not true that additional funding has not been made available to schools.
“We also authorized school boards to use their $363-million reserves. Those reserves are there for a rainy day. It’s obviously a rainy day now,” he said. “We’ve also allocated, I think, over $250 million for capital maintenance and repair of schools over the course of this year, most of that was done in the summer . . . to improve ventilation systems and other upgrades to address COVID in the schools.
“The notion that we can, as the NDP suggests, create, I think, 13,000 new classrooms and 800 new schools and license 13,000 new teachers is ridiculous. It’s not a plan to open schools, it’s a plan to keep them shut,” said Kenney.
Order 33, unlike most sci-fi movies, boringly but essentially simply reiterates the rules about mask-wearing and social distancing in schools. It’s based on science and the best available information.
Unscientifically, I asked some of the kids in my neighbourhood how they were feeling about returning to school after being off since March.
“So, so, so excited,” said a Grade 2 boy.
“I can’t wait,” said one Grade 1 girl.
“I’m excited to see my friends,” said a Grade 5 girl.
The kids’ opinions, unlike Dr. Hinshaw’s orders, may not be based on science, but they are meaningful and important.
Licia Corbella is a Postmedia columnist in Calgary.