Pasadena Elementary is getting some extra security with a fence, but the school council’s chairperson is upset the school hasn’t had much say in the work to be done.
The issue of student safety was thrust into the spotlight last September when a five-year-old girl in kindergarten wandered away from school property unnoticed during a lunch break.
The Newfoundland and Labrador English School District confirmed last November a fence would be built around the property to help prevent a repeat of that sort of incident.
Hal Cormier, chair of the Pasadena Elementary school council, recently told the Western Star the council was urged by the district to consult with the school and parents to learn more about what sort of fencing structure they would like to see. He said the council held several meetings on the topic this past school year to collect that input.
Cormier said he was recently informed the fence project has already been designed without the input of the school. He said all of those meetings now seem to have been a waste of everyone’s time.
“I’m losing council members in September because of this,” said Cormier. “Parents are asking why they are giving up their time to volunteer so they can have input, but it’s not going to be looked at because the decision has already been made by the district office.”
The Newfoundland and Labrador English School District would not do an interview on the subject.
In an emailed response, the school district said the Pasadena School Council was given an opportunity to provide input into the planning for the fence at the school. However, the final decision rests with school district staff with an eye to safety, security, practicality and maintenance.
According to the district, it will be releasing a tender for construction in the coming days, with the aim of having the fence in place for September.