Statement from NDP Education Critic Carla Beck on the Sask. Party hiding from criticism, making things worse on school sanitation and disinfection

“It has been two days since the Minister of Education delivered the worst Return-to-School Plan in Canada. They’ve downloaded responsibility onto school divisions with no funding – and crucially no funding to reduce class sizes.

“Maybe that’s why instead of holding a briefing today (August 6, 2020) – contrary to past practice during the Covid-19 pandemic – the Sask. Party has instead put out a release with no press availability, no minister quoted and no accountability.

NDP call on government to revise and resubmit their failed return-to-school plan

Today, NDP Leader Ryan Meili said the Sask. Party had failed their homework assignment and called on them to provide a real plan before schools reopen in September. Education Minister Gord Wyant has repeatedly placed the responsibility for a safe reopening of schools on school divisions that have long been underfunded by the province.

“Parents, teachers and kids are worried, and they are looking for a plan that gives them the confidence they need to return to school,” said Meili. “Instead, they got the worst plan in Canada from this Sask. Party government and a minister trying to pass the buck to school divisions that were already struggling with tough budget decisions. This government needs to take responsibility and come up with a real plan, instead one that’s failing the test and passing the buck.”

“Not a plan for schools - a plan to fail”: NDP responds to Sask. Party return to classroom update

Saskatchewan NDP Education Critic Carla Beck criticized today’s education update by Sask. Party Education Minister Gord Wyant as the worst plan in Canada. Other governments have provided detailed plans - what the Sask. Party has released today is what other governments provided months ago as a starting point in their planning.

“Our Saskatchewan NDP team has spent months talking to educators, health professionals and families,” said Beck. “There is a massive gap between what they are telling us needs to happen and what we see today from this Sask. Party government. What Gord Wyant has produced is not a plan for schools - it is a plan to fail the test of protecting students, families and education professionals.”

Mounting debt and no land sales at Global Transportation Hub

NDP commit to GTH inquiry, call for economy committee to convene

With the Global Transportation Hub (GTH)’s annual report showing debt continuing to pile on and still no land sales being reported, the NDP is committing to a public inquiry into the land scandal at the heart of the project, and is calling for the Standing Committee on the Economy to examine the last two annual reports – something the government once did but is now refusing to do.

Saskatchewan NDP Sets Out Back-To-School Priorities as COVID-19 Cases Rise

With COVID-19 cases in Saskatchewan rising while testing continues to lag well behind the national average, Saskatchewan NDP Leader Ryan Meili and Education Critic Carla Beck called on the Sask. Party government to get serious about plans to reopen schools in September, and laid out seven essential requirements for a safe back-to-school plan.

“It’s so important that we get this right. The first priority for the safe reopening of schools during the pandemic period is the safety of children, teachers and education staff,” said Meili. “Health Minister Jim Reiter has failed to manage the COVID-19 pandemic effectively, with inadequate testing, inadequate preparation within the health system, and no clear plan for safe school reopening. This has left parents flying blind as they prepare to send their kids back to school. Parents want our kids to go back to school, safely.”

“Maximum capacity”: NDP slam Reiter for the return of hallway medicine during COVID-19 spike

The Saskatchewan NDP called for an explanation from Health Minister Jim Reiter regarding serious gaps in Saskatchewan’s healthcare capacity, with internal memos indicating rising pressures on testing and bed occupancy, and public complaints of immunocompromised patients being left in hallways. NDP Health Critic Vicki Mowat and NDP Leader Ryan Meili were joined by Angela McLean, a woman who spoke out last fall after being left in a crowded hallway in the Pasqua Hospital for nearly a week. 

“We’ve had months to prepare the health system for re-opening,” said Mowat. “Minister Reiter has failed to plan for the health system’s needs in a COVID-19 resurgence and now families and patients are paying the price.”