“We know that the busing issue is fairly topical at the moment. We are again working with the District to look at the changes, and what I think it is important for the parents to understand is the School Districts asked us change the way we provide funding for busing. They wanted it as part of overall block and they make the local decisions as to how it is allocated.”
Fassbender says they need to relook at how that change has affected communities like Fort St. John. “What we are finding in communities like Fort St. John that we need to take a look at how that works and if there are other changes that need to be made.”
Asked about the local area geographical uniqueness, the Minister noted the so-called student location factor is already part of the government’s funding formulae, and it will be reviewed, as it relates District 60.
“We are going to review that as it relates to Fort St. John. My commitment to the School District personnel has been that we are going to revisit that and look at has it worked, if it hasn’t worked why not and what would be recommended as changes.”
According to Fassbender a technical review committee has already meet with School District 60 on this topic. “We have a technical review committee that has been up here twice already and meet with the district about the student location factor. So we will be reviewing it again.”
Mr. Fassbender stopped well short of any transportation policy change commitment but he left the door far enough open, for parents of local rural area students, already facing a so-called “partial registration fee” next fall, to be at least be able to hope for some pocket book relief.