Classroom space continues to be utilized at a premium in the Central Okanagan School District as enrolment is on the increase. (Black Press Media)

Central Okanagan School District to expand use of portables

Spiking enrolment puts squeeze on existing classroom space

Central Okanagan Public Schools will add to its inventory of portables in use for the 2022-23 school year.

Based on anticipated enrolment for September 2022 and the reopening of École Bellevue Creek Elementary in the Mission and Webber Road Elementary in West Kelowna, the school district will purchase two new portables, move 13 portables and move two modulars, at a cost of $2.5 million.

The projection was part of a staff report submitted to the planning and facilities committee for endorsement at its upcoming April 6 meeting before being forwarded to the board of education for final approval.

The portable acquisitions and relocations will affect a number of schools:

• Four portables shifted from École Dorothea Walker Elementary to: École Bellevue Creek Elementary, North Glenmore Elementary (two) and Mount Boucherie Secondary (two)

• One portable from Springvalley Elementary to Shannon Lake Elementary

• One portable from Quigley Elementary to Watson Road Elementary

• Two modulars from École George Pringle Elementary to Webber Road Elementary

• Three portables purchased from Quesnel School District to Webber Road Elementary

• One Armstrong portable (at GPE) to Webber Road Elementary

• Two Quesnel School District portables to Constable Neil Bruce Middle

• One portable from École KLO Middle to Hudson Road Elementary

• Two new modulars for Hudson Road Elementary

Since 2018, the Central Okanagan School District has added 23 portables to school sites and funded $4.96 million to purchase and move portables.

On an optimistic note, the addition to École Dr. Knox Middle School and a new Westside secondary school between 2024 and 2026 will when completed will begin to ease the pressure on portable requirements.

Based on those funding approved projects, the staff report calls for a reduction of six portables by 2026-27 on the Westside, and one for Central Kelowna.

READ MORE: More portables reality for Central Okanagan School District

READ MORE: School facility plan faces challenges

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