Monday, March 30, 2009

A school District 52 mystery that has intrigued the Vancouver media

While the school district heralds the pending August arrival of Lynn Hauptman as the new superintendent for School District 52, the sudden departure of the previous holder of the office Eric Mercer has caught the attention of the Vancouver Sun.

Janet Steffenhagen who writes on items of Education for the Sun posted an interesting article on her blog today at that paper.
In her piece for the Report Card feature in the Sun, Steffenhagen wonders aloud about the timing of Mercer's departure and why no reason has ever been made public about that sudden parting of the ways.

She reviews some old news items from the Northern View (ah tsk tsk, the poor Daily News doesn't even get a mention) but ends up with many more questions than answers after her research on the sudden departure.

She also points out that a similar kind of situation took place in Delta back in 2007, a personnel change which resulted in apparently far more of an outcry there than Mr. Mercer's departure here has provided for. Among the telling quotes of the day is a column from the Delta optimist of that time from Ted Murphy.

"If we don't get such information, we're all left to wonder whether this money was squandered in some sort of bureaucratic power play, done at the expense of an already cash-strapped school district. Trustees must understand that 'trust us' isn't a sufficient explanation anymore."

In the close to her piece, Ms. Steffenhagen suggests that the same should be expected by Prince Rupert residents, in her quest for information she goes on to ask for any help from the readers of the Sun in tracking down some of the background on the Mercer departure.

It will be interesting to see if the Sun finally unravels this mystery for local residents, who for the most part have been left quite in the dark over the flurry of changes at the School District.
We will have to keep a closer look on the Sun's Report Card feature to see if more details suddenly become available for her and us.

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