Councillor, neighbours should avoid generalizing about GNS

It's not just wealthy families at independent schools

Re: Tax break irks neighbours (News, May 4)

I would like to comment on the inference by Mr. Sudds that the families of Glenlyon Norfolk School are wealthy and are being subsidized by others due to the school’s property tax exemption.

Although I obviously cannot speak to the personal wealth of all families at the school, I can certainly speak to mine.

I am a single mother with no form of support other than my employment income. When we moved from Toronto in 2006, my kids continued in the public school system.

In 2007 I was introduced to GNS and after meeting the principal and teachers, I decided the fit would be better for our family going forward.

I am by no means ‘wealthy’ and the commitment to tuition has required me to push out my retirement plans and make other concessions. The assumption that my choice to pay for my children’s education defines me as wealthy is a misnomer and actually quite insulting, especially in this context.

I also take issue with the comment made by Coun. Ben Isitt (who, in my opinion, has a higher responsibility to understand the facts than the average citizen), that “GNS clearly has the ability to pay the tax bill.”

He neglected to get all the facts, as the lion’s share of the school’s surplus was as a result of parent donations and earmarked for a new theatre arts centre. Anyone who visited our school would understand the need to upgrade our facilities.

My children have flourished at GNS and at no time would I suggest that this could not have happened in the public school system. But I made the choice to invest in their education through the independent school system and I believe it will continue to pay off over the course of their lives.

I sincerely hope that whatever decision is made on the treatment of the ‘not for profit’ status of independent schools is done with a greater consideration of the actual facts, rather than the opinion of those who have clearly not done their homework.

Lesley Brown

Victoria

Just Posted

Neighbour details hearing ‘thuds’ the day girls found dead in Oak Bay

Jury at double-murder trial hears from Andrew Berry’s neighbour

‘Goodness prevails’: neighbours reflect following suspicious death of 60-year-old Metchosin man

Martin Payne was found dead in his Metchosin home on Friday. Police have confirmed foul play.

Repatriation efforts work to heal and connect through history: Royal BC Museum

Victoria museum’s efforts bolstered by B.C. repatriation grant

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to make public transit announcement in Victoria on Thursday

Trudeau is speaking at a campaign countdown event in downtown Victoria

Afternoon crashes tangle Wednesday traffic in Victoria

Victoria Police were kept busy with a pair of rush hour crashes… Continue reading

VIDEO: Sparrows raise their chicks in Cadboro Bay deck planter

Jill Yoneda captured 11 days up close with tiny Junco sparrows

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of July 16

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Olympic softball qualifier gets $150K boost from provincial government

2019 Americas Qualifier to be held in Surrey from Aug. 25-Sept. 1

Gas price inquiry questions Trans Mountain capacity, company denies collusion

The first of up to four days of oral hearings in the inquiry continue in Vancouver

‘Benzos’ and fentanyl a deadly cocktail causing a growing concern on B.C. streets

Overdoses caused by benzodiazepines can’t be reversed with opioid-overdose antidote naloxone

Chinook retention begins on North Island, but amid new size limit

DFO calls measures ‘difficult but necessary’ following rockslide on Fraser River

Will you be celebrating national hotdog day with any of these crazy flavours?

The popularity of hotdogs spans generations, cultures

Former home of accused Penticton shooter vandalized

Ex-wife of man who is accused of murdering four people had her house vandalized

Survivor of near-drowning in B.C. lake viewing life through new eyes

“If I died that day, the baby wouldn’t know his dad,” said 31-year-old Mariano Santander-Melo.

Most Read