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Tractor protest draws more attention to school closure issues

CORNWALL — In light of the recent suggested school closures, the Glengarry Federation of Agriculture (GFA) participated in a protest outside of General Vanier in Cornwall on Fri., Oct. 21. Board members of the GFA attended the protest with their tractors to help generate attention towards the cause. Behind the protest were the Save Charlan and Save Our School organizations who are protesting the potential closures with increasing fervour.

The GFA members in attendance along with their tractors were Martin Lang, the current GFA president Rob McDonald and past GFA president Paul Vogel. Despite the heavy downpour of rain, these three GFA members were joined by 40 to 50 people, plus a steady flow of traffic and protestors who would stop by to show support. Lang, McDonald and Vogel’s participation was spurred after the GFA was excluded from the community partner meeting held on Oct. 21. Lang said the GFA worked tirelessly to get in touch with the organization in order to have a seat in the meeting and were ignored at every turn. Lang suspected the GFA’s lack of invitation to be the school board’s desire for a quick approval.

Lang is hopeful for an invitation to future meetings and the potential for an opportunity to speak at the upcoming public meeting. Lang noted that the public meeting has only set aside a one-hour slot for public comments, which he believes will likely give each speaking party a scarce few minutes to make their case.

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