HALIFAX – Progressive Conservative Education Critic Chris d’Entremont is asking why the NDP is choosing to cut Reading Recovery, a program that tutors grade one children who are struggling with reading and writing, when the business community is calling on the government to cut unused economic development programs.
“Nova Scotians must be asking themselves – ‘is children's literacy really the first place the NDP government should be looking to cut spending?’” said d'Entremont, whose son was a participant in the Reading Recovery program. “We have heard from educators that children who are not reading at grade level by grade three are at extreme risk to not complete high school. That creates a very high long-term cost to society.”
D’Entremont pointed to a recommendation yesterday from the Canadian Federation of Independent Business for government to cut economic development programs that they say are not being used by businesses.
“We know that savings must be found and it is the government’s job to make the case why programs should be cut,” said d’Entremont. “If the business community is telling them that their economic development strategy is not working, why is it that dollars are instead being taken from children’s literacy programs?”
The Progressive Conservatives believe that education is a key component of Nova Scotia's long-term economic growth.
“A program that teaches children to read pays for itself many times over," added d'Entremont. "It is a false savings.”