Student safety – and B.C.’s award winning Seismic Mitigation Program – took a step forward today with the announcement of $19.6 million in provincial funding to replace Sir Sandford Fleming Elementary.
Justice Minister Suzanne Anton made the announcement today on behalf of Education Minister Mike Bernier that the 1912 school will be replaced with a modern facility located further away from the busy intersection of Knight St and East 49th.
And thanks to a unique partnership between the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Children and Family Development, the Vancouver School Board, and the City of Vancouver the project will include a 69-space child-care centre for children up to four years old on the third floor.
The City of Vancouver is providing $6.3 million, while the Province is contributing $500,000 through the Ministry of Children and Family Development to help build the childcare centre.
The existing building will be used until the new school is built and students can make the move to their new home. The old school will then be demolished. Project design work is underway and construction is expected to start at the end of the year.
Sir Sandford Fleming Elementary was identified as a key project in the Vancouver School Board’s long-range facility plan, which includes schools that are top priority for seismic upgrades or replacements.
This project will be done under B.C.’s Apprentices on Public Projects Policy that will require apprentices work on the project so more young people are connected with skills training and apprenticeship opportunities.
Minister Suzanne Anton, Attorney General, Minister of Justice –
“Sir Sandford Fleming has played a key role in the community for more than a century – and the replacement with a new school will provide another century in a safe, modern school. These are the kinds of investments government can make thanks to our fiscal discipline and our strong economy.”
Stephanie Cadieux, Minister of Children and Family Development –
“Schools and child-care centres anchor communities, bring families together and help prepare our youngest learners for success. Under the B.C. Early Years Strategy, we are committed to supporting early learning and making sure families throughout the province have access to high quality affordable child care. The 69 new child care spaces support our long term goal of 13,000 new child-care spaces by 2020.”
Gregor Robertson, City of Vancouver mayor –
“The City of Vancouver is committed to early childhood development and supporting busy families, and we’re proud to be making a significant contribution to new preschool childcare spaces. Co-locating full-day childcare in an elementary school offers families a convenient ‘one-stop’ approach to early learning and care services, and a smart use of public space that not only improves access to quality childcare, but makes Vancouver a more inclusive and healthy city.”
Mike Lombardi, chair, Vancouver Board of Education–
"We are proud of this innovative solution working with our partners to build a new school, and a daycare, that will create both a safe environment and amenities that are needed by families in this community. The Vancouver School Board is committed to ensuring that staff, students and families at Fleming Elementary will have a safe and welcoming place to learn and thrive for decades to come."
- The school will have space for 440 students: 40 Kindergarten and 400 in grades 1-7.
- The new school will include a Neighbourhood Learning Centre.
- Government has invested $2.2 billion to date under the award winning Seismic Mitigation Program to seismically upgrade or replace 214 high-risk schools in B.C.
- To date, 149 schools have been completed, 16 are under construction, nine are in the tender and design stage and 40 are in the planning stages.
- To date, 20 seismic upgrades worth about $218 million have been completed in the Vancouver School District.
- Over the next three years, B.C. will invest $1.7 billion to replace and renovate aging school buildings and add more student spaces in growing communities.
- The Vancouver Project Office, which aims to ensure seismic projects in Vancouver are completed faster and more cost-effectively, has helped to expedited Sir Sandford Fleming Elementary along with several other key capital projects in Vancouver.
- Since November 2014, the Province has invested a total of $15.2 million to support the creation of more than 2,400 new child-care spaces throughout B.C. with an additional 1,850 spaces expected by March 2017.
Sir Sandford Fleming Elementary artist rendering: https://flic.kr/p/GmrZns
For more information about the Ministry of Education’s Seismic Mitigation Program: http://www.bced.gov.bc.ca/capitalplanning/seismic/
Vancouver School Board: https://www.vsb.bc.ca/
B.C.’s New Curriculum: https://curriculum.gov.bc.ca/
Neighbourhood Learning Centre: http://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/education-training/administration/community-partnerships/neighbourhood-learning-centres