OPINION: Sidewalks are a school district responsibility

OPINION: Sidewalks are a school district responsibility

Princeton has never really stepped away from the issue of sidewalks.

Specifically safety comes up now and again, especially concerning the lack of a sidewalk on Corina Avenue to John Allison Elementary School.

Cars go too fast on Corina, some parents say. The children walking are young – ages JK to Grade Three.

Likewise there are often complaints about students from Princeton Secondary School who take the opportunity of a walk to and from that institution to provide the community with free idiot lessons.

Kids push each other onto the Old Merritt Highway.

Teens play “chicken.”

That’s a bad hill even for the most careful pedestrian wearing high visibility clothing.

Prophets of doom predict with considerable relish that eventually some child is going to be hit by a car.

Sidewalks or no, the law of large averages suggests that is a true statement.

The sidewalk issue is one that deserves to be looked at again now that much of the community is absorbed in the great pool debate.

It doesn’t matter what the project is, or what level of government is proposing it.

As soon as you put a price tag on it there will be visionaries and natural leaders stepping forward to express their thoughtful views on better ways to spend the cash.

The feds compile a package for foreign aid?

Surely that money could be better spent on veterans.

A government invests in the arts?

Those dollars should be going to the homeless.

And so on.

Nobody spends tax dollars better than a person who has never served in government.

About two years ago School District 58 petitioned the Town of Princeton to build a sidewalk to make the walk to John Allison Elementary safer.

After town staff reviewed the request – and determined a sidewalk from Lapworth Street to the school would cost $227,000 – council sent back its regrets, along with a promise to prioritize this area for speeders with the RCMP.

Without question a sidewalk on Corina Avenue – to say nothing of one on the road to the high school – is a good idea.

It’s just puzzling that the issue was originally raised by the school district, and that there was an expectation it should be paid for from the municipal treasury.

The original puzzle, of course, is why the district ever built so many schools in the neighborhood of Middle of Nowhere.

Historic decisions yes and it’s too late to do anything about them now. But it is a head scratcher.

Central to the purpose of community schooling is that schools are…well…in and accessible from the community.

Yet all three of the regular schools in Princeton are situated as far away from the center of town as it is possible to get.

(In the case of the high school – which is so isolated it’s across the road from the airport – one can almost imagine it was a deliberate attempt to keep the inmates away from civilization.)

What would happen if the district decided to put a school in Coalmont? Would the town be asked to build a sidewalk to THAT?

When students live too far away from school to walk safely the school district pays for those children to be bused.

Transportation is the school district’s responsibility.

When the sidewalk comes up again – and it will, we are just getting out front – think about who really should be paying for it.

-AD

Just Posted

Longtime SOWINS volunteer Diane Fru (far left) walks with members of her family as they Walk To End Abuse Sunday, June 13, 2021. South Okanagan Women In Needs Society (SOWINS) raised a record amount this year. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
Walk to End Abuse in South Okanagan breaks fundraising record

More than $53,000 raised so far while the pandemic has increased need for SOWINS’ services

The Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race has been held in Summerland as a fundraising event. Do you know which Canadian city introduced this sport? (Black Press file photo)
QUIZ: A summer’s day at the water

How much do you know about boats, lakes and water?

RCMP thanked the public for assistance in finding Benjamin Archie, last seen in Princeton. (RCMP)
Missing Chilliwack man found safe and sound

The 80-year-old had walked away from his home in Chilliwack

.
Princeton’s Spotlight wins two provincial awards for excellence

Publisher takes first place for investigative reporting

Princeton GSAR responds 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. In 2020 the crew was called out 34 times, and members spent 721 hours on calls, and 683 hours training. Photo Princeton GSAR Facebook
Teen missing in Manning Park found after 24 hours

Young man spends night on mountain and survives with just a few scrapes

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller is seen during a news conference, Wednesday May 19, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Indigenous child-welfare battle heads to court despite calls for Ottawa to drop cases

Feds are poised to argue against two Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Flowers and cards are left at a makeshift memorial at a monument outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School to honour the 215 children whose remains are believed to have been discovered buried near the city in Kamloops, B.C., on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Pick a Sunday:’ Indigenous leaders ask Catholics to stay home, push for apology

Indigenous leaders are calling on Catholics to stand in solidarity with residential school survivors by not attending church services

(Heather Lueck image)
Crash north of Enderby knocks out power, slows Highway 97A traffic

A witness captured footage of a medical helicopter landing at the scene

Most Read