Parents at a Lakeland school have made good on a walk-out after they say communication between the board and themselves was severed. Parent’s lead their children out at Ecole du Sommet school in St. Paul last Thursday at 11:30 am. The group of parents released a statement claiming:
“On Monday March 19th,2018 , 45 days to date, we the parents of École du Sommet requested information from our board (East Central Francophone or Conseil scolaire Centre-Est) pertaining to the fact that our children noticed the principal was gone. The staff at the school could not comment and the superintendent Marc Dumont would not take calls or answer emails. It was told to one of our parents by president Reginald Roy on March 21, 2018 that our principal was “suspended” but could not provide any more information. Since that conversation they have recanted and are now calling our principal “absent”.
Spokesperson for the parental group Sue Stybel says the school is tight knight and the decision to walk-out wasn’t an easy one.
“Keep in mind that our school is only 178 students so it’s really small. We’re like a little family there.”
Stybel says the breaking point was when principal Yvan Beaudoin was put on suspension by the the school board. She says the leader of the school was well liked by parents and students alike.
“You could just tell the atmosphere is just totally different. The kids also noticed, with other families that I’ve spoken too, that the principal was not there. That was alarming to them because he greets the kids off the bus every day. ”
The parent’s also claim an incident took place where children were removed from school property without parents permission. The statement released calls for the resignation of East Central Francophone School Board Superintendent Marc Dumont.
The School board has released a small statement, outlining four issues including:
1. Negative comments and aggressive accusations are not helpful. We need to focus on what really matters here – the education and well being of our students.
2. There is an unresolved human resource issue at École du Sommet and privacy laws prevent us from talking about it publicly.
3. We have engaged an independent investigator to establish all the facts related to this matter. We are committed to letting her complete her work and provide us with a report.
4. We – the elected members of the Board – are committed to the principle of providing a welcoming, benevolent, respectful and secure learning environment that values diversity and promotes a sense of belonging in our schools. And, we fully intend to discharge these responsibilities until the end of our mandate.