Rocky View School officials are demanding a retraction and clarification from UCP candidate and incumbent Peter Guthrie for comments made during two election forums.

Guthrie accused school division officials of lying to parents about the capital approvals received from the provincial government in the 2023 budget.

Yesterday, RVS board chair Norma Lang sent a letter to Guthrie addressing the board’s concerns and requested a public retraction of his statements to clarify the construction funding approvals received for RVS  the budget. 

RVS officials say they firmly stand behind their statement shared with our families on Mar. 9 that the budget didn't include any construction funding for desperately needed schools in the division.

"Mr. Guthrie, the board has been honest, factual, and consistent with the information we shared about the status of our school capital plan requests," states the letter.

It provides links to what was included in the provincial budget.

"We acknowledged in the same letter that RVS was granted design funding and preliminary planning funding for a total of four projects. Your accusation that we lied to our parents is not true. We were factual in our communication that we received no construction funding in Budget 2023 for these four projects."

During the Cochrane virtual forum, Guthrie additional said there weren't any school-ready sites in Cochrane, but town and school officials say otherwise.

This week, Drew Hyndman, Cochrane's executive director of development and infrastructure services, confirmed there is a school-ready site available in the Heartland community, and a second one in Rivercrest is anticipated to be shovel-ready soon.

At the Cochrane forum, NDP candidate Shaun Fluker's comments contrasted those of Guthrie. Fluker stated Cochrane schools were full and there were zero dollars in the budget for new schools in Cochrane.

Lang's letter concludes, "We believe open dialogue and information sharing are key to our ability to deliver on our commitment to our 28,000 students, 3,000 staff, and thousands of parents and guardians. As we have throughout our advocacy efforts for space for students, we welcome further conversation and questions you may have."