Board of Education adopts updated Long Range Facilities Plan
On October 24, 2023, The New Westminster Board of Education adopted a refreshed version of its Long Range Facilities Plan (LRFP). The document outlines strategic recommendations for the District’s school infrastructure aimed at creating capacity needed to support students in our growing community. The latest iteration replaces the 2021 version of the plan in keeping with our commitment to update this document to remain current on the enrolment demands in the District.
Highlights of the 2023 LRFP update include (but are not limited to):
- A recommendation to acquire a site in the Fraser River Zone for another K-5 elementary school to address long term growth in the area beyond 2037.
- A recommendation to expand the already-approved Queen Elizabeth Elementary project to include an additional third floor, creating a 21-classroom addition.
- A recommendation for the immediate construction of a much-needed middle school in the Fraser River Community.
- A recommendation to acquire additional sites to expand Queensborough Middle School to accommodate 125 middle school students, combined with a secondary wing for 625 students to alleviate capacity pressure off New Westminster Secondary School.
- Updates to student enrolment projections that reflect expected growth resulting from current and approved developments in the city.
New Westminster Schools is facing significant capacity pressures across all schools as a large number of students seeking placements in our District accompanies a rising municipal population. The BC Provincial Government estimates enrolment in New Westminster schools will steadily increase in the coming years and reach nearly 10,000 students by 2037. In addition to providing asset management recommendations, the District’s Long Range Facilities Plan will also help us prepare for the future by ensuring we have sufficient capacity to accommodate a larger student body by building new schools or creating additions to existing ones.
About the Long Range Facilities Plan
The Long Range Facilities Plan (LRFP) establishes a District-wide framework for capital projects. It plays an important role in presenting capital project requests to the Ministry of Education and Child Care by informing the Ministry’s capital investment decisions.
The Plan takes the following into consideration:
- Educational program requirements and trends.
- Current and 15-year projections in enrolment and community demographics.
- Operating capacities, use and condition of existing facilities.
- Current and anticipated changes in land use.
- Future trends or anticipated new initiatives, including both those of the school district and the government.
- Transportation of students.
The LRFP also provides district-wide context for key local decisions like locations for district programs, addressing district areas with high enrolment, maintenance priorities, and optimizing facility assets such as catchment area configurations.