A former Parkview Secondary School student explains how the school helps its community and why it should stay open.
By Lynn Watkins
Published February 10, 2014
In my opinion, Parkview Secondary School should remain open because everyone here at Parkview really cares about each other and our school teachers and classmates will never be the same once split up.
The students who go there have mental and physical disabilities and receive help from all the Educational Assistants that they can't get from their teachers. Other schools would never understand as much as Parkview does about our disabilities.
I want to help save Parkview. This School needs and deserves to stay open for what it has done for Parkview's community and its family. It made a difference in my life and it has made many differences in other staff and students and their families' lives too. It has made a difference for so many of us including the staff that work or go to visit Parkview.
Parkview has made a big, strong, unique family. Parkview students won't be able to fit into a regular High School. They'll want to drop out or they would commit suicide from being bullied or tormented because of how they look, the way they are and the previous school they went to. All or most of the students couldn't handle regular schools. (I couldn't handle a regular school.)
When I first went to Parkview in 2009, I was nervous. I thought Parkview was going to be like my elementary school, where there was constant bullying, fighting and judgment.
But there wasn't much of that at Parkview. I mean, you would see a few fights and arguments but you wouldn't see much of that in one year in any other High School (you would see more drama). Parkview is a family: whether some of get along or not we still care about each other.
Parkview means a lot to its staff and students. Why would you take this school away from such a good community? The relationships with the Parkview staff and students are amazing and different from other schools.
Any student can go to any teacher and they would help each other on the spot, even if they are having a bad day. Some or most of the students were or would be trying to cheer the teachers up, and a lot of the times it worked.
Parkview gives its tudents so many wonderful opportunities and chances, but a couple of us keep getting into trouble and messing up and do regret it at times and even in the end.
Parkview has taught me many things, like there are people out there who are willing to listen and those that are not willing to listen. Also giving up is not an option but it's about making the right choice.
Parkview gives us Food Services, Trade Shops, Drivers Ed and Cosmetology, so we are able to get more opportunities to get jobs from them.
"Parents want to bring their kids here and the kids want to be here," and I was one of those kids. Principal Paul Beattie said this in a newspaper article on October 5, 2010 called "Heeding Code Red's Call To Action".
Parkview isn't just a school, it's a family and they even have two dogs named Lily and Soccer. But they always go home with their owner after School each day.
What about "Keep Balsam Beautiful"? It makes the Parkview Community proud and an even better Community and the School stands out from all the rest of the schools. Will they continue this in the new school? It just won't be the same.
Parkview Staff and Students love to give back to their community. The Wood Shop classes would build planters for neighbours' gardens, the Cooking and Baking Classes would bake pies, the Science Classes would grow flowers, the Computer Classes would make brochures, and the Gym Classes would deliver them to the neighbours' doors.
I am going to continue to fight along with Jordan Williams and the other Parkview students to keep Parkview's doors open to everyone who walks into the building. I am going to show the HWDSB what they are doing to this School is wrong.
Look at the events Parkview has had and the great people we have met. The opportunities we don't always get, like attending live shows at Theatre Aquarius. Also attending live Bulldog games at Copps Coliseum. And also by being able to show our School off at the Special Olympics each year to let people know that we really do care and that we are unique.
Parkview accepts anyone, even the mentally and physically delayed. Hey, they accepted me, right? That is why Parkview is so special and it deserves to see its 100th Anniversary.
How many more voices do you need to hear to understand how much this School is needed by all of its staff, students and community. It's even needed by me. I am doing this for the Parkview staff and students because I want to see them being successful and I want to see them have a bright and better future for themselves, and because I still care.
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