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Provide input on Halton public school board long term accommodation plan by April 27

– from HDSB public notice, web site

Parents & community members are invited to review and give feedback on the Halton District School Board’s 2015-2016 Long-Term Accommodation Plan (LTAP). This plan addresses the existing and projected accommodation needs of students in elementary and secondary schools and identifies new capital project initiatives, such as the need for new schools. A report provided to HDSB trustees April 6 (Report 16057) outlines enrolment concerns in both elementary and secondary schools, including schools that are either over or underutilized, and the potential need for boundary reviews, new school construction and potential program and accommodation reviews.

Currently Board‐wide, there is a combined elementary and secondary utilization rate of 96%. However, within each municipality, there are review areas of significant growth and decline in enrolment. The opening of Dr. Frank J. Hayden in Burlington in 2013 contributed to an overall surplus of pupil places in Burlington. It is projected that by 2025, there will be 1,920 available secondary pupil places with a utilization rate of 74%. Board staff are recommending that consideration be given to undertaking a Program and Accommodation Review (PAR) for all secondary schools in Burlington. PARs may lead to school consolidations and closures in order to address declining and shifting student enrolment.

The Burlington summary report is here: Burlington

The LTAP along with Powerpoint presentations outlining key points for Burlington, Halton Hills, Milton, and Oakville are available online here: 2015-2016 LTAP

Please provide your input by Wednesday, April 27, 2016 using either:

  • The online feedback form, which can be completed here: LTAP feedback
  • Mail to: Planning Department, PO Box 5005 STN LCD 1, Burlington, ON L7R 3Z2

Once the feedback is collected, staff will report back to Trustees at the May 4, 2016 Board Meeting.

My Take: As a parent of three children in public high schools in Burlington, I want to ensure that decisions are based not on historical methods of projecting enrolment, but the current data and new plans available to us for population growth in south Burlington. I will be providing the HDSB with the same information that I provided the Catholic board about Burlington’s Official Plan and Strategic Plan, with their emphasis on attracting families, and the amount of new development in Burlington that will encourage transition in South Burlington neighbourhoods as older adults move out and families with children move in.

I was inspired to seek public office because I believe, like so many of you, “I can do something about that” on the issues we face. As councilor, my role is to take a stand on what’s best for residents and go to bat for it. Pushback is inevitable from those who don’t have the community’s interests at heart. I will stand with you and for you, to achieve the best interests of our city, without caving to unacceptable compromise in the name of consensus.

What's your take?