New Rocky View Schools on track
The four new schools announced by former premier Ed Stelmach in May 2011 are on schedule, according to an Alberta Education spokesperson.
The Province has confirmed the final stage of bidding for three Airdrie institutions, including a high, middle and Francophone school and one Chestermere kindergarten to Grade 9 facility is now underway.
“(The Province) is selecting who is going to be building (the schools),” said Alberta Education spokesperson Carolyn Stuparyk. “(The schools) will be ready for kids to start school by September 2014.”
The opening of the new schools can’t come soon enough for Rocky View Schools’ (RVS) Superintendent Greg Bass.
“We are full, definitely,” said Bass. “Across the jurisdiction we are… about 95 per cent utilized. In Airdrie, we are pushing 100 per cent utilized. There’s no doubt that we need to go ahead with the new schools.”
Bass said considering the area’s projected population growth, he is hoping the Province will make more school announcements.
“If you are ever going to get out of that catch-up, we need to have numerous schools,” he said. “We are in need of a another three approvals.”
Bass said an announcement for new schools in Airdrie’s King’s Heights and Cooper’s Crossing and Cochrane would put RVS “in good stead.”
Although the situation in Airdrie may be more critical because of the city’s explosive growth, Bass said similar situations exist in other RVS municipalities, such as Chestermere, where less facilities give the board fewer choices when managing growth.
The three new schools slotted for Airdrie include a 400-student kindergarten to Grade 9 Francophone school, a 1,200-student high school to be built near RVS’ education building and a Sagewood-area Grade 6 to 8 school, which will accommodate 900 students.
The board is nearing completion of phase one, roughly 45 per cent, of Herron’s Crossing, a kindergarten to Grade 4 school located in Airdrie’s Williamstown. Bass said phase one was built with funds acquired through the sale of an RVS asset.
The 160 students slotted to attend Herron’s Crossing will start the year in RVS’ education building and will move into the school this October.
Langdon’s new Sarah Thompson Elementary School, which will serve 450 kindergarten to Grade 5 students, is also set to welcome students this fall.