Summer school returns to SD42

As the school year comes to a close, some students are preparing to head back to class sooner than others.

School District No. 42’s summer school program is set to begin next month, and the district will be offering full credit courses, as well as remedial classes, after dropping the option two years ago.

“Students will be able to get a leg-up on their studies for the next school year, “ said Bruce Grady, district principal for Riverside Centre, who is heading up summer school this year.

The Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows School District dropped full-credit courses from the summer school curriculum in 2010 after the provincial government upheld a 2008  court ruling that made it illegal for school districts to charge for summer school. As a result of the court ruling, enrollment skyrocketed to more than 1,000 students in 2009 as students sought to upgrade their marks or lessen their course load during the following school year.

“Summer school was growing too large and it was becoming too expensive to run for the district,” said Grady

The provincial government funds full-credit summer school classes at $400 per student, and remedial classes at $200. That’s compared to $731 for a regular school year full-credit course.

While, full credit courses will be back this year, students will have to apply to take the courses, and will need a recommendation from a school administrator to attend.

The deadline for summer school applications is June 29.

Classes run July 4 to July 29, with remedial classes running half days, and full credit courses running for the full school day.

Grady expects 250 to 300 students to sign up for summer school this year.

Classes have traditionally been held at Thomas Haney secondary. However, this year all summer school classes will be held at the Riverside Centre, formerly Riverside Elementary School, at 20575 Thorne Avenue in Maple Ridge.

“The location is more central to student who are coming from Pitt Meadows,” said Grady. The smaller facility, which doesn’t have air conditioning, will also likely cost the district less in utilities.

The district will be offering remedial classes for English, socials, math and science for Grades 8, 9, and 10, as well as full credit courses for English (Grades 10 to 12), Communications (Grades 11 and 12), Science 10, Social Studies 10, and a handful of Grade 10 and 11 math courses.