Enrolment in the Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows School District has been on the rise. (THE NEWS – files)

Top Stories 2019: School district hopes new school ‘sufficient’ to keep up with student enrolment in Maple Ridge

The school district is working to develop a new school in east Albion

The Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows School District is hoping a recent school opening and the purchase of a new school site in Albion will be enough to accommodate the school-age population in the area.

In September, cusquenela

elementary officially opened its doors on 104th Avenue to welcome over 450 students.

“Our hope is that it will be sufficient, but we work with the City of Maple Ridge to review and monitor enrolment,” said Korleen Carreras, school board chair.

In October, the elementary school hosted an official opening ceremony, as Premier John Horgan announced the province will provide $5.4 million for the purchase of land for a new school in east Albion.

READ MORE: Premier in Maple Ridge for new school announcement

The future school site is located at the corner of 249th Street and 108th Avenue, a short distance from Samuel Robertson Technical school.

However, cusquenela

elementary will not meet all the elementary capacity requirements for the next 10 years, although it does provide relief from overcrowding in schools, according to the district’s strategic facilities plan.

“In 2027, it is estimated that there will be 406 elementary students above school capacities with a combined utilization rate of 114 per cent, requiring up to 16 additional classrooms,” the report states.

There is no information available when construction of the next new school will begin.

“Now that we have the additional property, we’ll work on next steps,” Carreras said.

A new school is needed at the site as existing elementary schools in Maple Ridge are estimated to be overcapacity by 2028, according to the Ministry of Education.

READ MORE: C’usqunela opens Wednesday

The ministry provides funding for land acquisition and construction of new schools, however operating costs are not provided.

Enrolment in the Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows School District has been on the rise since 2014.


@JotiGrewal_
joti.grewal@blackpress.ca

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