Salmon Arm  

Parachuted in and working

After being parachuted in as the one and only official trustee for the North Okanagan Shuswap school district, Mike McKay went straight to work.

The former superintendent of the Surrey school district held meetings with staff and stakeholder groups on Wednesday and Thursday, said Alice Hucul, district spokesperson.

McKay will return to his new job next week, Hucul said.

McKay has stepped into a hornet's nest with confused and angry parents on one side and beleaguered district officials on the other.

Parents say he must win back their trust.

They also want proposals to close schools in the district off the table.

The district has assured parents the firing of the entire school board by the education minister yesterday would not affect classes. McKay was appointed to take the board's place.

“Our schools will, of course, remain open and continue to provide quality education to students,” said a statement.

The night before their dismissal, trustees finally passed the 2016-17 school budget in the amount of $69, 623,423.

The budget, and proposals to close schools, led to packed district board meetings over the winter.

As well, parents were outraged the board has approved the transfer of more than $10 million in surplus operating funds into capital funding projects over five years, including for the new $9.3 million board offices.


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