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Powell River Board of Education name change under consideration

School District 47 responds to Tla’amin Nation request
REFLECTING DIVERSITY: School District 47’s trustees will consider changing Powell River Board of Education’s name following a request from Tla’amin Nation.

School District 47 is considering a request from Tla’amin Nation to change Powell River Board of Education’s name.

Dale Lawson, chairperson of the education board, said at the May 18 school board meeting that a letter had been received from Tla’amin and there had been a conversation at the board’s committee of the whole meeting.

“We had a lot of robust conversation around the letter we received,” said Lawson. “As a board, we recognized that the City of Powell River and Tla’amin Nation have begun an important process in which they are engaging now. We recognize that two of our schools are located in the qathet region outside of the city. We recognize that our community is changing and that we need to remain responsive in order to meet the needs of students in our district.

“We recognize that our title and brand should reflect the diversity of our students and our region, and that the best path forward for our school district is to consider the findings from the process that is currently underway in our community before we determine a process and timeline for our commitment.”

In correspondence dated April 29 to Tla’amin hegus John Hackett, Lawson stated that on behalf of all the trustees, she was writing in response to his letter dated April 11, regarding the name change request.

“We acknowledge the importance of this issue to the Tla’amin Nation,” stated Lawson. “The board confirms its support for a name change for the Powell River Board of Education. As part of our ongoing discussions around a district-wide rebranding, we are committed to finding a new name for the school district that reflects the diversity of our students and the region. Our process and timing for both the name change and rebranding effort are still under consideration.”