Do you hear what I hear?

What I hear is someone not listening.

Our new CAQ government seems hell bent on abolishing elected school boards  and replacing them with appointed service centres.   Each with its own Tims I’m sure.  The education minister, Jean-Francois Roberge says the government will move  ahead because and there is no room for interpretation in the law. 

“If they go for a battle to the court, they will lose”

Fighting words indeed.

The Boards Belong to Us

The thing is school boards are not really a top of mind issue for most Quebecers.   Turn out rates in elections are anemic.   But on the English side, they are one of the few, if not only things in Quebec that English-speaking Quebecers get to run and decide for themselves.

Face it, generally we really don’t have a lot of clout.  And we do tend to  have a herd mentality when we vote. Wiping out the elected boards would be just another in a long line of moves designed to diminish our voices.

And standing up to this government using constitutional arguments which guarantee our protection is just the right thing to do.  Geoffrey Chambers of the Quebec Community Groups Network says it is about local control.

“Government appointed boards in regard to school management are going to respond to government priorities.  School boards respond to community priorities .’

Do you hear what I hear?

It’s the sound of no.

A Hill to Climb

Voters tend to remember governments sometimes what they failed to do and sometimes they are remembered for one sole act which hit the wrong nerve.

Valerie Plante and her Projet Montreal came into power with an ambitious agenda to change Montreal.   However, so far it seems in some respects the administration is governing not by common sense but by ideology .  

It is not unfair to characterize city hall as anti-car. There are real concerns that removing hundreds of parking spaces from Ste-Catherine street will stop people from going downtown.  But the thing most people will remember is the clumsy way it has handled the closure of the Camillien-Houde Parkway over the mountain.

Consultation only came after the pilot project was implemented    And the Plante administration hoped they could pull a fast one with borough mayor Luc Ferrandez proclaiming it was an unqualified success.

Most Montrealers are not in favour of closing down one of the city’s jewels to traffic.   More than 10 thousand people have submitted their opinions to the city’s public consultation office.  The mayor says she will follow the reccomendations of the office when they are released next year.   Somehow I have my doubts that the final decision by the mayor won’t somehow be torqued. But for now, there is hope that the unilateral decision will be overturned.   The consultation office seems to have a round hole and a square peg.   On verra

Common Sense SVP

The reason of course that we are even discussing this is was the death of a cyclist in October 2017.  An out of town driver  English speaking driver made an illegal u-turn resulting in the accident.  More than a year later after all the talk and all the controversy, on this favoured tourist attraction, is there a traffic sign in English?  No there is not.  

Do you hear what I hear?  En Francais svp.

Thank-you and Merry Christmas

As they say, this is a most wonderful time of the year.   It is a time for  family, joy and reflection.  And we must always remember those who find the Christmas season difficult and challenging.  For far too many, it is a time for sadness.   Be kind. Remember, it’s not about the gifts.  It is about something much bigger.

As Dickens wrote of Scrooge:

“And it was always said of him, that he knew how to keep Christmas well, if any man alive possessed the knowledge. May that be truly said of us, and all of us!’’

Thank you for your support in 2018.  Postscript is  truly a labour of love for myself and Dave Maynard.   We hope you have enjoyed our contributions.

Merry Christmas et Joyeux Noel !