Angry parents of EMSB students plan to bring solutions to Quebec education minister
Parents with students enrolled at the English Montreal School Board (EMSB) say they’re taking matters into their own hands because they are furious with how the board has managed the potential loss of three of its schools.
“Instead of bickering at each other and pointing fingers, just try to to put things together,” said parent Vince Giannini.
Parents of children who go to Gerald McShane Elementary, General Vanier Elementary and John Paul Junior High School say they have been meeting and coming up with solutions.
They plan to communicate their ideas directly with Quebec Education Minister Jean-François Roberge.
“We’re going to do it in a constructive, positive way where the minister will actually take us seriously, as opposed to what our commissioners have done,” said Antonio Zaruso, a member of the governing board at General Vanier Elementary.
WATCH BELOW: EMSB can’t agree on school transfers to French board
The debate comes after Roberge announced three schools would be transferred to the overcrowded French-language Pointe-de-l’Île School Board (CSPI) unless another solution could be reached to place 3,000 students.
EMSB officials voted Wednesday to propose co-habitating with the French board, but parents say they remain unimpressed by how the officials have been acted.
WATCH BELOW: EMSB plans to relocate Galileo School
“We went to the EMSB council meeting a couple of Mondays ago and saw the infighting. It’s quite embarrassing, frankly,” said Francesca Pitruzzello, chair of the governing board at Gerald McShane Elementary.
“At this point, we need to be heard. It’s deplorable. There’s no other words. It’s not acceptable.”
The parents say they are working on a co-habitation plan for the two school boards, and plan to unveil it at a press conference in the coming days.
“What we’ve done in two hours and a half, they haven’t managed to do since December 2018, so the board needs to reflect on that,” Zaruso said.
WATCH BELOW: Parents desperate for answers over the transfer of English schools
For two weeks, parents at the three schools in question have been dropping their kids off, not knowing where they’ll be going in September.
“It’s insane to shut down three schools and give parents two months to plan everything,” said Peter Roth, whose son goes to Gerald McShane Elementary.
The Pointe-de-l’île School Board has expressed opposition to the idea of co-habitation with the EMSB.
WATCH BELOW: EMSB parents shocked after learning of possible school transfers