UVic historian of education paints a bleak political picture, and blames all sides.
Author: Thomas Fleming
Published by Bendall Books (2011)
Just about everyone with an interest in B.C. schools will have to read this book — parents, teachers, trustees, administrators, politicians, the media. None of them are going to like it.
That’s because Thomas Fleming, a professor emeritus at UVic, has studied our schools for many years; he knows the system we set up back in 1849. He knows how it’s changed, not always for the better. With energetic impartiality, he finds fault with teachers, trustees, civil servants, and politicians, especially since the first NDP government took power 40 years ago.
From his earlier books and articles, I was familiar with his thesis: B.C. education had been effectively nonpolitical from 1872 until 1972. A handful of dedicated ministry officials had run the schools in an “imperial” style from Victoria, while sending equally dedicated inspectors out to make sure the system was running well. Those inspectors were often veterans of rural and urban schools who had risen through the ranks.