Salmon Arm  

Too many future students?

After years of declining enrolment, the North Okanagan-Shuswap school district is now facing capacity challenges in several areas, including Enderby, Armstrong and Salmon Arm.

Remedies have been put in place in Armstrong, including only kindergarten registrations and no cross-boundary transfers with students being referred to nearby Highland Park, and Enderby, where the Grade 7 cohort was moved to A.L. Fortune Secondary, among other things.

"I am pleased to see that the M.V. Beattie transition has gone well. I appreciate all the work that has gone into making this happen," said Superintendent Peter Jory during a school board meeting Tuesday night.

Salmon Arm has three sites, Bastion, Hillcrest and Shuswap Middle School, where projections show the school enrolment may go over capacity in the near future.

Jory said planning will likely be required in the Salmon Arm area.

Possible solutions could include:

  • redrawing of the K-5 catchment boundaries
  • reopening South Canoe school site as a regular school or program of choice
  • establishing a single track French Immersion school
  • purchasing portables or further reconfiguration of K-12 schools in the area

"Before we go any further we need more accurate data and further conversations. We will be reviewing the information again in the next few months,” Jory said.

As well, extensive work on a new strategic plan for the school district is almost complete, he said.

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