The province's largest school district officially unveiled 180 new student spacestoday as Education Minister Peter Fassbender and Surrey-Panorama MLA Marvin Hunt helped open a nearly $6-million, eight-classroom addition to T.E. Scott Elementary.
The addition - four kindergarten classrooms and four Grade 1-7 classrooms - increases the school's capacity from 295 to 475 K-7 students and allows the removal of 12 portables on site. The school's original 1957 classroom block and gymnasium were also seismically upgraded as part of government's comprehensive Seismic Mitigation Program.
The new wing was built to meet the BC Wood First Act, and as part of its innovative design the four kindergarten classrooms open to a shared patio space for students. Following construction the school repurposed surplus wood beams, building a number of benches for hallways throughout the building.
In keeping with B.C.'s Education Plan, the school also used the project to increase accessibility to technology resources for students. In addition to 90 iPads already available throughout the school, projector systems and interactive Apple TV were installed in the eight new classrooms.
The project is part of government's $144.5-million commitment to full-day kindergarten announced in 2010. As part of that funding, the Surrey school district received 26 modular classrooms at 18 school sites, funding to convert 36 existing classrooms to kindergarten use and 32 new classrooms through additions at six elementary schools, including T.E. Scott.
Peter Fassbender, Minister of Education -
"This unique project has seen an aging, high-risk school receive extensive seismic upgrades and provide 180 additional student spaces in a district that is in need of them. As education minister and an MLA for this city I know how valuable projects like T.E. Scott are to local families and I'm proud to have been a part of today's re-opening."
Marvin Hunt, MLA for Surrey-Panorama -
"It's no secret Surrey schools are facing enrolment pressures. Our diverse neighbourhoods are huge draws for young parents looking to raise a family. Investing in our school infrastructure through new, replacement or upgrade projects will continue to provide generations of students with the spaces to grow and pursue their passions."
Shawn Wilson, Surrey board of education chair -
"T.E. Scott Elementary has been transformed with the new addition and seismic upgrades provided by the ministry. Our board is also pleased to have funded improvements and upgrades inside and outside the entire building; from windows and siding, to flooring and wood finishes, and the new Learning Commons area. I thank T.E. Scott students, staff and parents for their immense patience during the construction of these important projects."
- The Surrey school district currently has more than 72,000 elementary, secondary and adult students and has some of the fastest-growing areas in the province.
- Since 2001, the government of B.C. has invested more than $243 million for 49 capital and seismic projects and eight site acquisitions in the Surrey school district.
- To date, 213 high-risk schools - or approximately two-thirds of all high-risk schools in B.C. - have been upgraded or replaced, are under construction, are proceeding to construction, or have been supported by government under the Seismic Mitigation Program.
- Since 2001, government has spent more than $2.1 billion to complete 93 new and replacement schools, 150 additions, 27 renovations and 22 site acquisitions throughout B.C.
- Government is currently working to upgrade, replace and build a total of 60 schools throughout B.C. over the next four years. The total cost of these projects is approximately $1.5 billion.
Surrey school district: https://www.surreyschools.ca/Pages/default.aspx
Seismic Mitigation Program: http://www.bced.gov.bc.ca/capitalplanning/seismic/
BC's Education Plan: www.bcedplan.ca
Government Communications and Public Engagement
Ministry of Education