It has come to my attention that the Bulkley Valley Learning Centre, an individual learning school of SD#54, is physically closing as of the end of this 2012 school year and the now attending BVLC students will be divided into 2 different schools .
The older BVLC students, grades 10 through 12, will be working out of Northwest Community College and grades 8, 9 and some 10’s will be attending Smithers Secondary School.
For years the BVLC school has provided individual learning and life skills to hundreds of students and I feel more consideration and consultation should be given to this decision made by the school board.
All schools offer the basics to all students but at BVLC it was so very different.
The students who attended were individuals who had many different needs that couldn’t be met by the present school structure in which they were in.
Student athletes came to the learning centre so they could continue with their academics on a schedule that allowed them to excel at both sports and school.
Other students came to the learning centre with health problems that made the every day schedule of school just too hard to keep up with, but at the Learning Centre they were able to learn at their own schedule and excel.
Students who found it difficult to work in a regular classroom situation, whatever the reasons were, also found their way to the learning centre.
Students came to the learning centre from other secondary schools for individual student/teacher learning on subjects they were behind in or couldn’t take at their school because of timetable conflicts or any number of other reasons.
The learning centre was a school where past students who now had children could attend on their schedule, achieve their Grade 12 education and then enter the work force with more options than they had before.
Students succeeded at the learning centre.
Student grew in self esteem and knowledge and they learned they were respected individuals and their individual differences were accepted.
Staff provided and encouraged this respect in all who were in the building.
We watched them grow and change.
We watched them amaze themselves in what they were able to achieve on their own and how far this learning would take them.
I feel strongly the education community is losing an important part of the school system.
I ask School District 54 to reconsider their decision to close the learning centre.
It seems to me this is another poor decision on closing a school.