Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION
Selinger is Lord Gym
See how the awesome power of the press can force government into action?
Monday morning, I wrote about the contents of the long-awaited report on the desperate need for much greater community use of school gyms, which you can read here: http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/local/school-gym-policies-a-mess-what-the--survey-found-119167369.html.
Early that very afternoon, Premier Greg Selinger announces the education capital funding budget, and lo and behold, there’ll be $50 million over five years for at least 10 new school gymnasia, which you can read about here: http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/local/capital-budget-new-school-for-amber-trails-119234974.html.
Kind of eerie, eh? Like that Stephen King story, in which the guy got a special typewriter, and whatever he typed came true. I’d better be careful how I use such awesome power.....
Now we wait and see how many school divisions come looking for new gyms.
Selinger explained that the gyms for Queenston and George V schools — two older and smaller elementary schools in Winnipeg School Division — are already covered off in the last stages of the four-year $319.2 million education capital budget, so they’re not taking a piece of the 50 mil.
The premier did say that Kelvin High School is on the list for consideration in that new pot of money, but there’s no sign yet when the first couple of new gyms will be identified.
OK, go ahead, I’ll wait while you put in nasty anonymous comments predicting they’ll be announced in September in ridings the NDP barely won last time.
Back to our topic.
Let’s hope that regardless of the schools where the gyms are built, that they be big enough for community use — high ceilings, some room under the baskets, some space on the sides.
The obesity and inactivity health crisis isn’t going to go away easily. This will help.
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More Telling Tales Out of School
More Telling Tales Out of School
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I’m pretty late to pontificating on Theresa Oswald’s education announcements, covered splendidly by colleague Larry Kusch.
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About Nick Martin
Nick Martin is the old bearded guy at the back of the newsroom, the most experienced reporter at the Winnipeg Free Press, having started his career in Ontario in 1971.
He’s been covering education for the Free Press since the spring of 1997, after decades primarily covering municipal politics, including a four-year stint at the Ontario legislature for the London Free Press.
Nick moved to Manitoba in 1988 with his Winnipeg-born wife, who is a professor at the University of Manitoba. They have two kids, both of whom graduated from Grant Park High School: son Chris and daughter Gillian.
Nick has won a national journalism award from the Canadian Association of University Teachers, two Manitoba Human Rights Journalism awards, and the Ontario Reporters Association investigative award.
Nick is a long-distance runner, having finished and survived 18 marathons and 15 half-marathons and 30-kilometre races, and having (barely) survived 10 years as an outdoor and indoor soccer coach.
Nick became a soccer referee in 2007, delighting in his 60s in outrunning 16-year-olds and keeping his distance from obstreperous coaches and parents.
Nick and his wife have discovered a mutual love for kayaking at their Whiteshell cottage, and are both regulars at the Reh-Fit Centre. They hold season tickets to both the Manitoba Theatre Centre and the Warehouse, and as empty nesters, have rediscovered the joys of an active winter vacation.
A native of Jarrow-on-Tyne, England, Nick is a member of the Toon Army as a Newcastle United supporter, and a proud citizen of Leafs Nation.
Blogs that Nick Martin follows:
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