At the invitation of the Blueridge Community Association, Trustee Barry Forward, the Liaison Trustee for the Windsor Family of Schools, presented an overview of the Future for Schools in the Seymour Area on Monday evening, April 4, 2016, at Blueridge Elementary School. The Association represents the collective interests of residents living in the Blueridge and Seymour Heights communities in the District of North Vancouver.
Trustee Forward's presentation included the background to the planned future closure of Blueridge Elementary after the completion of a new replacement school on the Seymour Heights Elementary School site.
The Board of Education has identified the replacement of Seymour Heights School as its highest priority in the Five-Year Capital Plan Summary 2015/16. The funding request is contingent upon approval and funding from the BC Ministry of Education.
The Seymour area (Blueridge, Seymour Heights, Maplewood, and Plymouth) has experienced a dramatic decline in student population from over 1,570 students in the late 1990s to the current level of 785. Maplewood School was closed in 2004 and Plymouth School in 2010. The schools are under lease agreement until 2020 (Maplewood) and 2024 (Plymouth).
The 2015 School District Facilities Plan identified the need for a more comprehensive study of catchment areas and school locations in the Seymour area. This study is expected to proceed in consultation with the District of North Vancouver to identify future growth potential arising from developments in the area and to consider the preferred location of future school sites to best serve the anticipated student population.
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Opened in 1968, Blueridge Elementary School will continue to remain open and operate as an elementary school until after Seymour Heights Elementary School is replaced. The Board passed a closure bylaw in 2010 but the actual closure is contingent upon Ministry approval of a replacement school for Seymour Heights. A larger Seymour Heights school facility is required to complete the future consolidation of Blueridge with Seymour Heights. More details