The head of the New Brunswick Teachers Federation is pleased with the latest statistics on high school dropouts. According to the government, the drop-out rate has fallen to its lowest point in 10 years.
New Brunswick's drop-out rate has dipped below 3 per cent. Between 1999 and 2000, 1,800 students quit high school. While that's still a lot of students, teachers and the government say they're gratified by the results.
June McNairn, president of the New Brunswick Teachers Federation, says the lower drop-out rate is because of teachers' hard work. But she adds that those same teachers are stretched to the limit.
"Teachers bend over backwards every day producing lesson plans that are geared to giving individual help," she says. "[They're] crying for resources, going to team meetings, asking for resource teacher help, asking for teacher assistance, and most of all asking us to bargain lower class sizes."
Education Minister Elvy Robichaud says he is happy with the latest numbers. He agrees more needs to be done even though the province has already added 150 teaching assistants to classrooms.
Robichaud says tutoring, summer programs and alternative school settings have also helped curb the drop-out rate.