Wi-Fi to stay in schools, Victoria board decides


  • Jun. 15, 2011 12:00 p.m.

A committee formed in November to review concerns over the use of wireless internet in the Greater Victoria School District is recommending the technology be kept in schools.

On June 13, trustees decided to follow the recommendations of provincial health officer Perry Kendall.

When the Wi-Fi committee was formed, Kendall wrote a letter to the Ministry of Education, quoting from a Canadian review of evidence concerning Wi-Fi and health effects (published in 2010 by the Ontario Agency for Health Protection and Promotion). The study did not find evidence of adverse health effects related to Wi-Fi use.

Kendall wrote that despite the lack of evidence, school boards may wish to consider inexpensive and unproven measures for reducing children’s exposure to Wi-Fi, including turning off Wi-Fi when not in use.

The school board has one week to review the recommendations, before a final decision on Wi-Fi is presented at the June 20 board meeting.

“In general, what they’re saying is that the board should continue to monitor the effects of Wi-Fi and should take another look at it again next year,” board chair Tom Ferris said.