Parents, volunteers needed to salvage extra-curriculars
Trustees with the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board believe parents and community volunteers are the best option to salvage extra-curricular activities for the rest of the year.
Many programs are in jeopardy because of the on-going labour dispute between the Ontario government and public school teachers.
The teachers' unions are protesting the McGuinty government's passing last week of Bill 115, which put a two-year freeze on wages and strikes.
Grade 11 student Jaedie Sansom said the labour dispute isn't only affecting sports. She said she is worried the annual theatre production at Longfields-Davidson Heights might be cancelled if the dispute lingers.
Concerns about theatre disruption
"The theatre is my life. So to have it taken away would just be horrific. I don't know how I'd handle it yet," said Sansom.
Trustee Pam Fitzgerald said she's optimistic winter and spring activities won't meet the same fate as many of the fall sports activities.
"We'll hopefully be able to address it better because we will have more time," said Fitzgerald.
Sansom said she's gaining her own extra curricular experience in organizing rallies and writing news releases as a student activist.
"This is my chance to really make a difference. I don't know if I'm going to get another chance like this in high school," she said.
Only 3 schools registered in all 14 sports
Only three schools — Glebe Collegiate Institute, Colonel By Secondary School and Sir Robert Borden High School — registered a team in all 14 autumn sports.
Ten high schools in the school board have had to cancel their entire fall sports programs, after many teachers declined to manage their school's teams. They are:
- A.Y. Jackson Secondary School
- Bell High School
- Cairine Wilson Secondary School
- Hillcrest High School
- Osgoode Township High School
- Rideau High School
- Ridgemont High School
- South Carleton High School
- West Carleton Secondary School
- Woodroffe High School
Twelve of the remaining 13 schools registered for some, but not all, of the sports teams. The last school, Sir Guy Carleton Secondary School, does not register sports teams.
Six of Ottawa's public high schools are entering a very limited number of fall sports teams: Nepean High School, Brookfield High School, John McCrae Secondary School, Canterbury High School, Longfields-Davidson Heights Secondary School, Sir Wilfrid Laurier Secondary School and Merivale High School.
Nepean High School has registered a girls' field hockey team only because a retired former teacher has volunteered to coach.
The remainder of high schools only registered in individual sports. They are: Earl of March Secondary School, Gloucester High School, Lisgar Collegiate Institute and Ottawa Technical High School.