Spring Into Action

Register for new fitness sessions starting mid-March! 

Register Here

Students and teachers in Border Land School Division will have to find a new way to see the world.

Trustees have voted to discontinue school-sanctioned international travel clubs that are commonly responsible for organizing trips, through a third-party agency, to places like Europe during Spring Break.

Craig Smiley, BLSD Chairperson, admitted this wasn't an easy decision for the Board to make and said discussions had been ongoing for about a year-and-a-half. Ultimately, he explained safety and liability played a role in the final decision.

"(The school division) is totally liable if something happens...to these kids when they're on these trips, and we were starting to feel not very comfortable about that."

"When you send thirty or forty kids off, and something ever happens to them, I don't know if I'd want to be the guy having that discussion with all of the parents," added Smiley.

He noted there have also been some disciplinary issues that have come up in recent trips, making for a difficult experience for teachers and other chaperones.

Discussions around the board table also centred on fund-raising and whether it was reasonable for students to ask the community to help pay for the trips, or as Smiley put it, vacations, that can run in the neighbourhood of $4,000. Subsequently, this led to discussions of whether there is an equal opportunity for all students to take part in the trips.

These trips also came at a cost to the school division. Smiley explained just one of the associated expenses was providing substitute teachers to fill in for the staff that was away.

At the end of the day, Smiley feels it isn't up to the schools or school division to offer these opportunities and suggests interested parties could create a community travel club instead. "We're out of the travel business," he noted.

The final international trip approved by the Board will happen in 2021 out of Shevchenko School in Vita. W.C. Miller Collegiate in Altona is slated for one last trip scheduled for 2020. 

BLSD Superintendent, Krista Curry, says the reaction of school administrators has been mixed.

"Of course there is disappointment, as this is a passion for those staff that organize (the trips) and the students who have attended. We know that there is value in travel," she explained. "There is also some who see the costs associated with the trips and the impact that those fundraising efforts have on a community and are ok with the decision for that reason."

Meantime, there have been some questions about future travel options within Canada or the United States and Curry said trustees will further discuss those in the new year.

She noted that co-curricular trips that support school programming, such as sports or band, are not affected by this decision and will still come to the Board for approval.

MillerTrip Pompeii submittedW.C. Miller students at Pompeii during the 2018 Italy trip

 

More Local News

Prepping Your House For The Spring Melt, The Sooner The Better

With a wet spring forecast it's important to make sure your house is prepared, so you can minimize any potential water damage. "For the foremost, I would suggest, be proactive about checking your…

Adult & Teen Challenge 'Super Thrift Store' Heading To Winkler

A new thrift store will be popping up at 390 1st Street in Winkler. The 'Super Thrift Store' will open in May and is being run by Adult & Teen Challenge of Central Canada. Development Director Daniel…

Winkler Welcomes New City Events Coordinator

Winkler's community events have a new advocate. Nolan Dueck takes on the role of City Events Coordinator April 1, helping organize and promote activity at the P.W Enns Centennial Concert Hall,…

Closure Of Curriculum Centre "Huge Loss" For Rural Teachers

Local teachers are reeling after the province recently announced the closure of the Manitoba Curriculum Support Centre and the move to an online database. "The centre has been really good for all of…

Local Cider Company Welcomes New Provincial Legislation

A local company is welcoming the Province's work to expand the sale of cider and spirit-based coolers to hotel beer vendors. "This is one step in the right direction," Marcus Wiebe of Dead Horse…

Altona Mayor Says Cannabis Shop Selection Was "Inevitable"

"To some extent, it's inevitable." Altona mayor, Al Friesen That's the reaction of Altona Mayor Al Friesen following Thursday's announcement that the town is 1 of 7 rural communities approved to…

Carman/Dufferin Prepared, But Not Worried About Flooding

Carman/Dufferin Director of Public Safety Ben Vanderzwaag is not too concerned about flooding in the town or surrounding municipality, and says snow levels in ditches are not too worrisome. "At this…

Residential Parking Ban For Semi Trucks Takes Effect In Winkler

Semi and delivery trucks are banned from parking on residential driveways in Winkler for the next 90 days. While council loosened up the year-round by-law recently, the ban still remains for the…

Emerson-Franklin On High Flood Alert

The community of Emerson is preparing for high water on the Red River this spring. Predictions of a 2009 size flood with normal weather conditions have most communities on high alert this season.…

"2018 Was A Refreshing Year," Says PVBC Executive Director

Applications have already begun to stream in as the Pembina Valley Bible Camp (PVBC) begins preparations for their upcoming season. The camp continues to create a unique, community-focused…

PembinaValleyOnline.com is your only local source for community news and information such as weather and classifieds.

Search the Biz Guide

Login