Students, families and staff in Maple Ridge can look forward to a new and expanded Eric Langton Elementary school now that funding to replace the school has been approved.
“I’m proud of the work our government is doing to build safer schools, and work with school districts to find beneficial solutions to help meet the demands of enrolment growth,” said Jennifer Whiteside, Minister of Education and Child Care. “The new neighbourhood learning centre at the school will include child care space and is a great example of how schools are integrating services that benefit families.”
The Province has approved funding to replace Eric Langton Elementary with a seismically safer facility that will have an additional nine classrooms, bringing the school’s total to 680 spaces. Built according to LEED Gold Standards, the school design will incorporate energy-saving measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
The Province has committed $46.4 million, and the school district will contribute an additional $2.5 million. To minimize disruption, students and staff will remain in the current building while the new school is built on the existing gravel field. Construction will start in late 2023.The new school is expected to be ready for occupancy in fall 2025.
“It’s great news for the community that Eric Langton Elementary will be replaced with a larger and seismically safer facility,” said Bob D’Eith, MLA for Maple Ridge-Mission. “I know from experience that Maple Ridge is a wonderful place to raise a family, and our government is making investments that support families now and into the future.”
The new school will have a neighbourhood learning centre that will be used to provide services such as child care, and for community groups to deliver support services and programming in Maple Ridge.
Throughout the design process, the school district will work with the Katzie and Kwantlen Nations to incorporate design elements that reflect Indigenous ways of knowing, such as the importance of storytelling, traditional ecological knowledge and local teachings that will forge a genuine connection between the school and the land.
“This is amazing news for our community,” said Elaine Yamamoto, board chair, Maple Ridge - Pitt Meadows School District. “The board continues to advocate for safe and sustainable learning environments, and sincerely welcomes this investment in a modernized and expanded Eric Langton Elementary, which was identified as a priority in our recently completed strategic facilities plan. The neighbourhood learning centre included in this school is a welcome addition to the school community that will benefit children and families for many years to come.”
Other recent investments in the Maple Ridge - Pitt Meadows School District include $3 million from the Province for the seismic upgrades of Fairview Elementary and Westview Secondary, as well as a government investment of $5.4 million to purchase a site for a future school in the northeast Albion neighbourhood.
Budget 2022 includes $3.1 billion for school capital projects during the next three years, including new and expanded schools, seismic upgrades and replacements, and land purchases for future schools.