Letter: It's time for Yap to step up for our Richmond schools

Open letter to MLA John Yap,

I voted for you and the (B.C.) Liberal Party last election. I voted expecting that you would lead and represent the Richmond-Steveston constituency. So far, you have failed.

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At the time when Richmond schools need you most, you have been conspicuously absent. Where were you at the long range facilities planning open houses?

Where were you at either of the rallies organized by Richmond Schools Stand United?

You were invited.

Where were you or any MLAs at the three recent Richmond School Board meetings held at the locations of the three Richmond schools proposed for closure?

So many times in recent weeks I’ve asked, “Where’s John Yap?”

And why are our children being deprived of sustainable funding for quality education?

Year after year, more costs are downloaded upon the school districts with no additional funding: rising BC Hydro, increases to MSP, unfunded salary increases, carbon credits, mandated improved network costs.

This is unacceptable.

The per student funding model does not work and must be scrapped — your own government has said so.

What’s worse?

Dozens of schools and thousands of children are at risk in the event of an earthquake — an earthquake which experts say will come soon. We cannot delay in upgrading these schools to be safe. We cannot use my children as pawns in some game!

The government must fund seismic upgrades now — no strings attached.

 You are in a unique position among MLAs as you sit on the select standing committee on finance and government services. You have a say in this government’s fiscal priorities. Children and education must be a priority.

It’s not too late. The time is now to take the lead. Step up and show the leadership for which you were elected.

Chris Dyck

Parent, J.G. Diefenbaker Elementary

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