Transparency

0

Towards the end of St. Patrick’s Day, a furor arose on social media on a Women Studies course at Eleanor Hall School.

Teaching “self-improvement techniques” like analyzing the shape of a girl’s face to determine which hairstyle is most flattering struck many as “Regressive Behaviours 101.”

Of course, this outpouring of moral outrage was mostly overblown, as is so often the case. Certainly Pembina Hills did not do a good job of packaging and advertising the course, but it wasn’t like young girls were being trained to become handmaids in the Republic of Gilead. It certainly wasn’t worth the outrage on social media, or the international coverage it generated. If you want more thoughts about that whole situation, read Olivia Bako’s column in this week’s print edition.

We have a bigger bone of contention with Pembina Hills, namely that we still have no idea what the heck is going on with this personnel review of Supt. Symyrozum-Watt.

If you’re sick of us saying that over and over, then imagine how we feel about continually asking the same questions and receiving no answers.

At least Symyrozum-Watt now seems to be aware of what prompted this review. She doesn’t want to talk about it, of course, but people under investigation rarely do.

It’s the level of secrecy that is the matter at hand. We currently know more about an FBI investigation into U.S. President Donald Trump than we do about a review of our own local superintendent.

Yes, this is a personnel issue.

Yes, we recognize discretion needs to be exercised.

But still we keep coming back to the fact that Colleen Symyrozum-Watt is a public employee, who is being paid with public dollars. Any legal proceedings that involve this case will be paid for with public dollars, as will any possible severance.

Our stance will always be that the public has a right to know where their money is being spent. We made that same argument regarding the Tawatinaw ski hill this week and we’re assured we’ll have answers in next week’s edition.

What would satisfy us? How about an estimate of how long this review will run, an indication of what actions have been taken, or even what prompted this review?

At this point, anything is better than nothing.

Share.

About Author