Standing on principle
I am writing as a Village Host to fully support G.D. Maxwell's January 17th article regarding the requirement for Village Host volunteers to get a criminal record check. As a volunteer for the 2010 Olympics I had to submit to this check, so when the new requirement was introduced by the RMOW I didn't bother to protest — but it sure made me wonder.
The Village Host program started back in 2004. Why this requirement now? What's changed? Has there been some "incident" that has made the RMOW distrust us?
Like Max, I have no criminal record. My major concern is the security of the confidential information the RMOW has collected on the volunteers. Once an individual has complied and the RMOW requirements are met, are the documents destroyed in a secure manner, or is the information at risk of appearing in the public domain in the future?
Sadly, Max has opted out of the program on point of principle. If more follow suit, the RMOW will lose a very valuable service.
Trails for everyone
Whistler is a wonderful place to live and Stu Sjolies makes it even more wonderful! Stu is the mechanic at Nicklaus North Golf Course and under his own initiative he has been grooming the service trail along fairways 1 and 2 and the cart paths on fairways 14 and 15 for walkers, dogs and snowshoers.
He has designed the groomer that he pulls with his own snowmobile. He does this so that he and anyone else can walk their dogs on a groomed trail, but not disturb the trails around the golf course that are part of the Lost Lake cross-country network. "Stu's Stroll" makes it easy to connect with the Valley Trail by the Clubhouse or at Nick North Blvd. to cross the highway. We would like to thank Stu for taking on this endeavour and also to thank Nicklaus North Golf Course for allowing the trails on fairways 14 and 15 to be open for non-skiers.
Maureen and John Richmond
FSAs don't help students or teachers
Once again Grades 4 and 7 students in Sea to Sky School District and across the province will be writing Foundation Skills Assessment tests (FSAs) later this month. Teachers have longstanding professional concerns about these measurements and the misuse of the data by external organizations such as the Fraser Institute, an ideologically extreme right wing 'think tank' whose goal is to undermine public education and privatize public services such as education and health care.
While government officials have expressed misgivings about the use of FSA data to rank schools, these tests continue to be administered and the data continues to be used to promote the Fraser Institute's destructive assault on public education.