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Essex takes next step on Harrow High School closure

Posted on Friday November 13, 2015

The Town of Essex has taken the next step in fighting the closure of Harrow District High School.

On Tuesday, November 10, a petition containing over 300 names, along with a formal request for administrative review of the board’s decision, was filed with the Ministry of Education on behalf of Essex Town Council and a committee of concerned Harrow residents.

“Council continues to be very concerned about the potential closure of Harrow High,” says CAO Russ Phillips. “The Town is therefore committed to fully pursuing the process established by the Ministry to ensure that boards of education follow their own policies and the Ministry’s guidelines when making critical decisions that can result in school closures.”

The Ministry is expected to ask the Greater Essex County District School Board to file a response within 30 days.

The Ministry will then have another 30 days to decide whether to appoint a facilitator to determine whether the board’s accommodation review process was undertaken in a manner consistent with its locally developed policies and the Ministry’s guidelines.

At its October 13th meeting, the school board trustees voted 5-4 in favour of closing Harrow High at the end of June 2016.

The Town hired lawyer James Cooke of Ducharme, Fox to request a review of the program accommodation review process and the Board of Trustees’ decision.

The Town should know by mid-January whether the Ministry intends to appoint a facilitator.