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Premier Clark makes quiet return to Chilliwack private school

Premier Christy Clark toured Unity Christian school in Chilliwack last Wednesday. - Submitted
Premier Christy Clark toured Unity Christian school in Chilliwack last Wednesday.
— image credit: Submitted

Premier Christy Clark's tour of a Chilliwack private school last week went unnoticed unlike the last time she tried visiting the school.

Clark spent an hour at Unity Christian school on Wednesday, touring the classrooms, and talking with staff and students.

"We almost had to drag her from the classrooms because she was so interested in engaging with the students," said school principal Ed Noot.

"This was a big moment for our students to be able to interact with the leader of our province, and it was a thrill for them to be able to see this person we see on TV all the time right here in our school."

However, unlike several other highly publicized visits made by the premier to the Chilliwack area recently, this visit flew under the radar.

A spokesperson at Laurie Throness' campaign office said there was nothing "nefarious" about Clark's unannounced visit, that she was just making up for a tour that had to be cancelled last month.

The premier's original tour of Unity Christian had been scheduled on the first day of the public school teacher's walkout. When word got out about the tour, a large group of protesting public school teachers awaited the premier outside the private school.

While the tour was cancelled, the premier still met up with Chilliwack's independent school leaders and parents later that day.

"My job is to talk to as many British Columbians as I possibly can, to talk to the whole wide array of parents out there, including the ones that make the choice to send their kids to a faith-based school," Clark, who sends her own son to a private school, told The Progress back in March.

But Chilliwack Teachers' Association president Katharin Midzain is wondering why Clark hasn't visited a public school in Chilliwack.

"This is just one more example of where this government is putting their priorities in education, and they're not for a general, free, accessible public education," said Midzain.

She also criticized Clark's decision not to announce the private school tour.

"I think it's quite shocking that we have a premier that has to hide her movements," said Midzain.

"Why is she being so secretive? What is she afraid of?"

kbartel@theprogress.com

twitter.com/schoolscribe33

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