West Kelowna  

Chief Tomat Elementary School in West Kelowna to be expanded

School to be expanded

Madison Reeve

UPDATE 12:35 p.m.

The provincial government has announced an expansion of Chief Tomat Elementary School in West Kelowna.

The province is spending $10.5 million on a prefabricated addition to the school that will add 165 students spaces for 2025.

BC NDP MLA Ravi Parmar made the announcement Monday in front of ongoing work to expand North Glenmore Elementary with a similar prefab addition. He says every 37 days, 10,000 people move to B.C., and many settle in the Central Okanagan.

“With this growth, we know that there is a need for more services and access to services, including schools,” Parmar said. “But we know that traditionally built classrooms and new schools can take years to construct.”

Parmar says the prefabricated additions are fast to construct and much more comfortable than portables for students and staff.

The Chief Tomat expansion will add five elementary rooms and two kindergarten rooms.

“With prefabricated expansions the build time can be cut in half, making a big difference and delivering more spaces sooner for kids, he said.

Central Okanagan school board chair Lee-Ann Tiede said they appreciate the funding for the school expansion.

“We look forward to continuing to work together and meeting the needs of our students and families as we continue to grow,” she said.

The provincial government says it has spent $180 million creating 2,385 new student seats in the Central Okanagan School District over the past six years.

SD 23 superintendent Kevin Kaardal says the addition is more than needed.

"We are currently at 108 per cent capacity across the district and so we need seats for kids and I will say that government has really come to the table," he said.

Madison Reeve

ORIGINAL 12 p.m.

The provincial government will be making an announcement Monday about school expansions in the Central Okanagan.

BC NDP MLA Ravi Parmar, appearing on behalf of the education minister, will be making the announcement at noon at North Glenmore Elementary.

A livestream of the announcement will be carried by Castanet.

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