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EDITOR’S NOTEBOOK: It’s not that Sherwood can’t be saved

A letter writer last week highlighted something that may have been lost on many people since the idea was announced in January.

Commenting on the high school closure process, Sandi Horton noted there hasn’t been a lot of talk about why Sherwood should be kept open, or how to do it.

She’s right. There really hasn’t been a lot of talk about how to keep Sherwood open since public school board staff announced their recommendation to close it. It’s almost as if the review committee believes there is an unchangeable plan in place to shutter Sherwood — the second-newest high school on the Mountain — once the process is over.

It’s not as if Sherwood can’t be saved. Until trustees voted last year to sink more than $6 million into Westmount, the popular west Mountain school was in as bad of shape as Sherwood. Put the same cash into Sherwood and it would greatly extend its usable life.

That’s what closure committee member Ken Durkacz feels. He presented an option at last Wednesday’s meeting which would save the home of the Saints. It’s likely to be accepted this week and presented at a public meeting Jan. 11.

Sad thing is, however, with Barton in much better shape and no chance of a new high school being built in Ward 6, even if the option makes the cut and is presented to trustees later this winter, it’s not likely to save Sherwood from being shuttered.

Bowes and arrows
The public school board’s closed meeting to elect its chair and vice chair is reminiscent of the old Soviet Union, where the Politburo would come out from secret session to proclaim the new leader.
Did new public school board chair Tim “Do as we say, Mountain closure committee” Simmons say, effectively, that school board trustees who have collectively over 140 years of experience at the helm do not understand their jobs and need private tutoring to bring them up to speed? Imagine if city council tried that.
West Mountain trustee Wes Hicks said last week there was no sense in further looking at French immersion for kindergarten students as it would give the public false hope there might be a change in what staff recommends. I’m surprised the same logic isn’t applied to the current high school review, as it gives false hope that Sherwood and Mountain will remain open.
Nice to see the three Mountain public school board trustees mend fences in recent weeks. The cold standoffish attitudes have fallen by the wayside, it seems, for the most part.
Is the NDP for or against the provincial Liberal government? The party rails against the government, yet three of the city’s NDP MPPs vote in support of the Grits’ throne speech.
Nice to hear “Merry Christmas” when calling the Catholic school board. If people don’t keeping saying it, it makes things easier for the politically correct crowd to make anti-Christian attitudes socially acceptable.
Skinny Vito says the odds of a new school being built in Ward 6 are 100-1. “There’s no land left, so I’m not sure why they keep pretending there’s a chance,” he said. According to Vito, the new school will be on the Jerome Park site off Upper Welington.
Kudos to Mayor Bob Bratina for spending only about 55 per cent of his $977,000 office budget this year. Much of that was achieved by keeping his political staff to just one, opposed to the several that past mayors have hired.
Note to anyone who wants to occupy a public place: It’s a public place. That means you can be photographed or filmed — no “permission” needed. The same law which allows you to film police at work, allows anyone to film you.
Gord Bowes is editor of the Mountain News. The Editor’s Notebook generally appears biweekly. Got a tip, complaint or suggestion? Email

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