BC Throne Speech

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New Support for Families with Children

….Strengthening families is at the centre of our economic and social agenda. Government will take steps to renew and revitalize education, to assist families with children and to secure affordable health care for our grandchildren.

Education improvements will focus on the individual and unique needs of our children.

New research gives us a clear view of a way ahead that will provide for the special gifts and special needs of every child in the province.

Early childhood development creates brighter prospects for all our children.

As we help children discover their passions and interests, so we will find our future as a province.

StrongStart BC Centres will continue to support the learning needs of children and their families.

Voluntary, full time kindergarten for five year olds will begin this September.

It will be fully funded and in every school by September 2011.

New partnerships with the private sector and parents will enable the establishment of neighbourhood preschools for four year olds and three year olds within communities over the next five years.

They will provide families new voluntary options for public and private preschool across B.C.

Several other initiatives will improve services for children and families….

Government recognizes that families with children face additional costs….

There are few services that can do more to lift a child to the full opportunities of life than an unequivocally great education. That is our goal for all the children of British Columbia.

Several significant reforms will be advanced to modernize our education system for the 21st Century.

New emphasis will be placed on parental involvement and on tailoring our education system to each child’s individual needs, interests and passions.

New forms of schooling will be developed to provide greater choice and diversity, centered on students’ special interests and talents.

Smarter approaches will allow more resources to be focused on students’ learning needs while less is spent on administrative costs.

In concert with local governments, Neighbourhood Learning Centres will integrate neighborhood needs with available capital resources and under utilized spaces.

Seven day a week facilities management is fundamental to providing critical community services that meet the needs of B.C.’s families affordably….

Ongoing financial discipline is essential.

It is the responsibility of all in this house to guide our economy and our public finances back to balance.

Balancing our budget is more than a financial imperative. It is a social imperative as well…

We must curtail expectations of government and look for new ways of meeting our needs within the substantial spending increases already provided….


Related news articles:

Government delivers throne speech
Sean Leslie

The Campbell government’s latest Throne Speech delivered by Lieutenant-Governor Stephen Point is promising to capitalize on BC’s Olympic momentum to create jobs and better support families with children.

But as usual, the speech is long on ideas and short on specifics.

…. On the education front, government says new forms of schooling will provide greater choice and diversity, centre on students’ special interests and talents.

The speech repeats a promise to begin all day kindergarten this fall; and new partnerships with the private sector will establish neighbourhood preschools across BC over the next five years .

There is a new emphasis to be placed on “parental involvement” in the education system.

The government is promising “innovation” in health support services, new hospitals and public-private partnerships to give patients new choices….


Families are priority in throne speech
Victoria Times Colonist
February 9, 2010
By Les Leyne

Faced with a handful of options on where to put the government’s emphasis, the B.C. Liberals have made the fairly safe choice: Kids.

There was a range of action items in .. throne speech involving First Nations, green energy and smarter government, but the Liberals hope the real crowd-pleasers will be the vaguely outlined new initiatives for families. Most of the high-impact new ideas centre around either educating children, keeping them occupied or putting a roof over their heads.

It looks like the steady drumbeat of concern about the number of children living in poverty in B.C. — the highest percentage in Canada over the past several years according to surveys — has finally focused the government’s attention.

The Liberals haven’t gone so far as to mount an official anti-poverty campaign, as many provinces have done, and as the representative for children and youth has urged them to do. Joining that crusade would involve acknowledging that the last eight years of Liberal government have left some people far behind. …


James Slams Throne Speech
By 250 News
February 09, 2010

Victoria, B.C. – The Provincial New Democrats are not happy with the Speech from the Throne.

“Today B.C. is facing significant challenges, including heavy job losses, persistent child poverty rates and an extended recession in which families are struggling to make ends meet. Not only did the Liberals fail to mention these challenges in the Throne Speech, they failed to put forward a plan to address them,” says New Democrat Leader Carole James .

James added that the Throne Speech signals B.C. is in for even deeper cuts and tough times to come.

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