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Premier expected to give B.C. school boards the pink slip

Gordon Campbell expected to announce plans to eliminate elected school boards

A Vancouver School Board trustee has told the Vancouver Observer that there is speculation Premier Gordon Campbell may announce in his public address tonight plans to fire elected school boards in B.C. and replace them with appointed regional education authorities.

Mike Lombardi, a trustee from the Vancouver board of education, said he has heard from a number of sources that the new model will closely mirror the health care structure that Campbell initiated in 2001.

After appointing George Abbott as the new Minister of Education Monday, the move is expected to be another one of Campbell’s bold moves towards centralization and privatization, according to Lombardi.

Lombardi thinks the speculated move will have extremely negative impacts on B.C.’s education system.

“Under this model, locally elected, accountable and responsible officials will be replaced by faceless, partisan, political appointees who will carry out their work behind closed doors -- as do the health authorities,” he said.

He thinks that the new appointed authorities will be a complete departure from the transparency of the existing structure.

"If the rumours are true, today will be a very sad day for democracy," he said.

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