PCVS media ask
Subject: PCVS media ask From: Date: 20/11/2011 21:58 To: <hugo@educaƟonreporter.ca>
I wanted to keep you in the loop, not because you are one of our media targets (based on geography) at this point but because this seems to be one of your areas of experƟse.
This is the message that is going out to community newpapers within the Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board tonight:
We are writing to draw your attention to a situation within the Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board which serves both your community, [communityName], and our community, Peterborough. Our board of education executed an 11th hour decision to close a highly effective secondary school in downtown Peterborough. This Thursday, November 24th is the second board meeting since the decision and, as happened on decision night, there will be hundreds of students, parents and community members protesting and presenting delegations at the meeting - this will be a News event! Many of the trustees have refused to meet with lobby groups, thereby choosing to shut down communication with the tax payers they represent, listening only to information presented by the administration they hired. The trustees for your community, [trusteeName1] and [trusteeName2] (were split regarding notarizing/notarized) the school baord administration’s recommendation to close Peterborough Collegiate and Vocational School. The recommendation had been changed a mere three days before the vote and came out of a process so flawed even those executing it challenged it’s legitimacy. We feel that it would be a helpful role for your publication to get information to your readers, the constituents of your local trustees. Our experience might prove educational to citizens in your community should enrollment issues affect them but at present both Peterborough and PCVS need support.
Please consider assigning a photographer and/or journalist to cover this significant board of education related event on Thursday, November 24 at 1994 Fisher Dr, Peterborough. The meeting is scheduled for 7:00pm but the rally will start in the parking lot in front of the board office at 5:30pm.
The board of education undertook an accommodation review process regarding four city secondary schools, in which closure of a school was recommended to be a last resort. The process is defined and required by the Ministry of Education. However, due to serious concerns about KPRDSB’s implementation of this process and the outcomes, a Request for Administrative Review has been initiated with the Ministry. That review is the official course of action but it promises to be a lengthy, non-binding process that needs to be bolstered by an immediate stay of the decision by the board. If the board does not stay their decision and rushes the implementation PCVS will be further damaged or even lost. Campaigns are well underway in the community, including support from City Council, the Downtown Business Improvement Association, the arts community, the Police Force, and on the internet at www.peterboroughneedspcvs.com but we need the help of other voices within the KPRDSB’s domain.
The process that the board set up, contrary to the intentions of the Ministry ended up dividing the City of Peterborough. Our local media has been doing an excellent job covering the story but, like other small papers, is stretched for investigative capability and doesn’t reach the full readership served by the board. Your publication, with a little distance, but still having context (within the boundary of KPRDSB) may be in a position to investigate whether some allegations have merit. There are concerns about predetermined outcomes and information manipulation/withholding. Minimally you could point your readership to online information (beyond the website listed above there are facebook groups, tweets and blogs) and provide contact information for the local trustees.
The issues at stake cover a range of journalistic topics (arts/cultural education, ESL, urban planning, environment, economy, tax stewardship, heritage, bullying) so the story has great depth and can serve as a warning to your readership should your community’s time come for an accommodation review. A document containing the PCVS Messaging and Talking Points can
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be found on the website for more details.
We are open to a range of approaches for getting this story to your readers:
one of your journalists might like to sink their teeth into this potentially juicy story and we could support their efforts we could author and submit articles for publication to support your coverage of the November 24 board meeting we could write letters to the editor subject to your editorial guidance Please let us know how you would like to work with this story as soon as possible. We hope to see you holding your local KPRDSB trustees to account on behalf of your readers November 24th.
Sincerely, The Out of Town Media subgroup of the Writing subgroup of the Communication committee of the campaign Peterborough Needs PCVS
Here are some web resources: www.kprschools.ca pcvs.kprdsb.ca/ www.peterboroughneedspcvs.com www.peterboroughcollegiatefoundation.org/ twitter.com/#!/search/realtime/%23dontclosepcvs facebook.com wall postings on Page “Peterborough Needs PCVS” and Group “Raiders Unite”
Here is some of the local coverage we have already received: http://www.mykawartha.com/searchresult?q=pcvs http://www.ptbocanada.com/display/Search?searchQuery=pcvs http://www.thepeterboroughexaminer.com/Search.aspx?search=pcvs&st=date&sd=desc
I just discovered you this evening. I will try and get up to speed on informaƟon from your blog in the next couple of days. We have a blogger in our camp who has been kept at arms length but may yet become the hero.... Ɵme will tell.
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