Abbotsford school board. Dustin Godfrey/Abbotsford News file photo

Abbotsford school board. Dustin Godfrey/Abbotsford News file photo

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Abbotsford school facilities naming process to include Indigenous voice

Local policy changing to meet requirements in provincial policy

The Abbotsford School District’s naming committees for facilities will now include Indigenous representation.

The issue was brought up at a recent school board meeting by Trustee Shirley Wilson, who noted that the B.C. government added Indigenous representation as a requisite for naming committees.

The provincial naming policy, according to the B.C. government website, is in effect for all government bodies and ministries, including school boards, health authorities and Crown corporations. It states that naming committees must include representatives from the Ministry of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation.

“I’ve raised it in the past about naming future buildings with some potential for Indigenous naming, which we’ve already done in the past with the Ray & Millie Silver Library,” Wilson said.

“I’d just like to suggest that our … policy be updated and amended accordingly so that position is actually enshrined.”

The matter saw little conversation among trustees, however, Korky Neufeld took some issue with the idea.

“I find it a little prescriptive,” Neufeld said. “Race and culture, for me, doesn’t play a part in it.”

However, board chair Stan Petersen noted that if the district is obliged to include Indigenous representation, it should include that language in its policy.

Find more of our coverage on the Abbotsford School District here.

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Dustin Godfrey | Reporter

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