Wednesday, October 20, 2021
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Local school districts waiting on word about future of school nutrition program

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School districts across the province are concerned about the future of the school nutrition pilot program.

The $15 million program was brought in by the former NDP government, however the United Conservatives haven’t said yet if it will continue this fall.

Lethbridge’s Holy Spirit School District received more than 250 thousand dollars in funding for this last year. Superintendent Chris Smeaton says it’s an important program. “We know there is a growing hunger in Lethbridge and surrounding areas so the loss of this type of funding will certainly impact the lives of many children and families.”

Across the province this past school year, the program has fed around 33 thousand students each day.

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Holy Spirit received just over $250,000 to fund the program in four of its district schools, however the program is up in the air at the moment until word comes down from the new provincial government.

Smeaton says not having this program continue just impacts the most marginalized families. “If it’s not funded (this fall) we’re just going to have to look for greater community support to look after these kids who are coming to school hungry.”

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Patrick Siedlecki

Pat has been a mainstay in the CJOC News department from the time the station launched in 2007. He’s been in the position of News Director since then and has been anchoring daily news casts as well as reporting and working behind the scenes.

Community is important to him and keeping CJOC listeners and readers informed about what’s happening across southern Alberta and beyond.

Pat has been in radio broadcasting for the past 24 years, starting in Port Alberni on Vancouver Island in 1997 and then moving up island to Nanaimo for another few years before heading to Lethbridge in 2007.

Pat grew up in the small Saskatchewan farming town of Foam Lake. After high school, he went to Western Academy Broadcasting College (WABC) in Saskatoon prior to moving to the island.

Pat also spent several years broadcasting hockey in the BCHL as well as seven years as the radio voice of the Lethbridge Hurricanes in the WHL.

Pat has been working at Cornerstone Funeral Home in Lethbridge as a Certified Life Celebrant and Funeral Assistant since 2016.

News and sports have always been Pat’s passion from the time he was a teenager and he’s always been grateful to have had the opportunity to make that part of what’s been a fun and long radio career!

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