Quebec continues to focus on volunteer work in the schools

News 29 March, 2018
  • Photo from the archives, Stevens LeBlanc
    The minister responsible for Labour, Dominique Vien

    Daphnée Dion-Viens

    Thursday, 29 march 2018, 11:17

    Thursday, 29 march 2018 13:37

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    Quebec maintains the relaxation of the rules for volunteer work in the schools, even if a school board has instead decided to ban them.

    • READ ALSO: volunteer work banned in schools

    The minister responsible for Labour, Dominique Vien, said on Thursday that it had no intention to go back. It was in November of new rules that give more flexibility in respect of the construction work to be done in the public buildings, including by allowing parents to volunteer to do the chores of painting in schools.

    The easing had been decreed in the wake of an incident in a school in Saint-Sébastien, Montérégie, who had made a great noise. The paint work undertaken by volunteer parents had been declared illegal by the Commission de la construction du Québec, which led Québec to revise the rules in force.

    However, since the paint work that have been made voluntarily in the past year must now be redone, the paint is chipped in a few places, the Commission scolaire des Hautes-Rivières, has decided to ban the work of volunteers in its facilities, without exception, reported Thursday in The Journal.

    In spite of this decision, Quebec is staying the course. “We have come to allow [the volunteer work] under certain conditions, by surrounding them, but it does not make them mandatory, said the minister Vien. It has been said that it was a matter of common sense.”

    The minister believes that the decision of the Commission scolaire des Hautes-Rivières, which it does not know the details, is the “internal governance”.

    For his part, the deputy adéquiste Marc Picard has been obliged to denounce this decision. “It does not make sense!” he launched, calling into question the validity of the resolution adopted by the elected members of the Commission scolaire des Hautes-Rivières. “Who is it that directs, in Quebec, it is the government or the school boards?” he asked.

    Mr Picard estimates that the minister of Education, Sébastien Proulx, should intervene to remind the school board to order.