Letter: Willoughby schools’ crowding unacceptable

Dear Editor,

I am concerned about the continued overcrowding of our schools in Willoughby. Although Langley School District submitted its capital funding requests to the Ministry of Education last year, with the number one priority listed as a new high school, no funding has yet been announced.

Our community is in desperate need of a secondary school. This area has experienced extraordinary growth over the past few years, resulting in a sizeable surge in enrolment levels at all Willoughby schools, including the one and only high school supporting the area, R.E. Mountain Secondary.

R.E. Mountain is already significantly over capacity, and enrolment is expected to double its actual capacity within four years. That means our children will be attending a school with twice as many students as it is supposed to have.

That is not acceptable.

Moreover, the Yorkson Area middle school set to launch in September 2014 is already projected to open over capacity, and there is much more neighbourhood growth anticipated.

In fact, the Langley School District has determined that area growth will necessitate the establishment of a second middle school by 2016.

If the Ministry of Education approves the funding and construction of a new high school, R.E. Mountain could be easily converted to a middle school, effectively solving the serious enrolment issues.

My hope is that the government makes the critical needs of the students on the Willoughby Slope a high priority, and approves funding for the construction of a new secondary school.

Lorraine Baldwin, Langley

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