Saanich school district onboard with dry grad donations

Policy change allows SD63 high schools to accept donations made at B.C. liquor stores

  • Nov. 15, 2013 5:00 a.m.

High schools in the Saanich School District will have a little more money to spend on its graduation celebrations this year, as the Saanich board of education voted to amend its donation policies.

On Wednesday (Nov. 13) trustee Tim Dunford’s motion to remove a policy that said the district wouldn’t accept any funding received from business that sell tobacco or alcohol passed by a 5-1 vote.

Since 2001, the Saanich School Board hasn’t participated in the B.C. Liquor Distribution Branch’s Support Dry Grad Campaign – which provides money to high schools to pay for local dry grad programs – due to this policy.

“Even though these donations are not sourced from the sale of alcohol – it’s just donated by a customer who happens to be there independently, that was (the policy that) was relied upon by those concerned about sending a wrong message,” Dunford said.

“The majority of the board felt that the gesture of supporting students in the context of a dry grad for celebrating this achievement of graduation was more important than a narrow view that a donation was coming through a facility that happens to sell alcohol. This money has nothing to do with alcohol sales.”

During the campaign, B.C. Liquor Stores provincewide ask customers to donate $1 to the dry grad campaign when they purchase alcohol at the till.

Cindy Nairn, a parent at Claremont secondary who advocated for the change, says she’s ecstatic that the school board supported the move.

“It’s an embarrassment for the (Saanich) district to be one of the only districts not to accept the dry grad money,” she said. “This money now will get divided up amongst the three schools – Claremont, Stelly’s, Parkland – and that’s a big help for them, because purse strings are getting thinner in the communities, and we want to keep these dry grad programs going as long as we can.”

Of the three B.C. Liquor Stores within SD63’s catchment area – Broadmead Village, Trafalgar Square and Sidney – the Broadmead location is the only one that currently participates in the campaign. However, until now, the money raised there has been given to the Greater Victoria School District.

During 2013, the Broadmead Village store collected $1,496 in donations.

Dunford says the policy change comes early enough in the 2013-14 school year that the 2014 grad classes will benefit from this year’s campaign.

kslavin@saanichnews.com

Just Posted

Royal Roads University to host a Black History Month panel

Four speakers will discuss being of African heritage in B.C.

VIDEO: Friday night fire outside Saanich Staples

Witness says two employees helped put out blaze

Victoria non-profit empowers women escaping abusive homes with a fresh start

Organization’s gift certificate program helped around 400 women last year

VIDEO: Royal Bay Secondary students take flight in ‘Peter and the Starcatcher’

Play tells the story of the orphan who becomes Peter Pan

Volunteers begin work on memorial garden for former Metchosin counsellor

Garden a fitting tribute to Moralea Milne, a champion of Garry oak ecosystems

VIDEO: Iconic ‘snow cone’ takes shape at B.C. park near Clearwater

Snow cone forming at Wells Gray Provincial Park one that would make Disney’s Queen Elsa proud

POLL: Will you be wearing pink to take a stand against bullying?

Schools and workplaces across Greater Victoria and around the province will be… Continue reading

Pink Shirt Day a reminder to ‘T.H.I.N.K.’ before posting on social media

‘Be Kind’ message on shirts sold for anti-bullying activities of Wednesday, Feb. 27

A ‘warm embrace’ for grieving parents at funeral of seven young fire victims

Mourners offered love and support to Kawthar Barho, mother of seven children

Indigenous leaders, politicians say Trans Mountain report flawed

The National Energy Board has endorsed an expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline a second time

UPDATE: Reports of rashes prompt closure of all Harrison Hot Springs pools

Public pool available after Fraser Health shut down all five mineral pools until further notice

Legislation to protect B.C. farmland comes into effect

Regulations enhance food security, encourage long-term farming

Have you heard the legend of Shuswaggi, the Shuswap Lake monster?

Witness accounts as old as 1904, and as recent as 2018, place a creature in the lake’s depths

UPDATE: B.C. ticket holder winner of $25.9-million Lotto Max jackpot

Next draw set for Mar. 1 with an estimated jackpot of $10 million

Most Read