Rocky View Schools (RVS) is conducting a city-wide public engagement to gather input on how to best balance student enrolment across the rapidly growing community.

RVS staff working committee carefully examined the problem and potential improvements to better balance student enrollment throughout Airdrie in order to look into workable solutions.

Some of those potential solutions include one middle school turning into a high school, Grade 9 could be moved to middle schools, or the grade structure could be changed all throughout Airdrie. Each scenario might have a variety of effects on students, families, and staff, such as potential boundary modifications or newly designated schools.

Through a public engagement that will last for the majority of this school year, RVS hopes to get feedback and suggestions from as many stakeholders as possible.

“As Airdrie’s population expands, enrolment in local schools grows along with it,” said Board of Trustees Chair, Fiona Gilbert. “Right now, most Airdrie schools are near-to-over full, with 14 elementary and middle schools feeding into three full high schools. The goal of this community engagement is to hear from families, staff and other stakeholders to help inform the Board of Trustees’ decision on a solution to best serve all Airdrie students.”

RVS has tried to advocate to the government for many years to provide full construction funding and modular classroom spaces to meet students’ needs. Due to government funding not keeping pace with our growth and the three years it takes to build a school, the earliest possible opening is 2026 or 2027 for a new elementary school and 2028 for a new high school, according to RVS.

While the potential of new schools will be welcomed additions, ongoing enrolment growth will continue to create space challenges in many schools even after they open within Airdrie.

“Many of our families and staff have shared their concerns with us on space challenges. Balancing Airdrie Student Spaces will provide an accessible, transparent and structured opportunity to collect that feedback as an important part of the Board’s decision-making process,” said Superintendent of Schools, Greg Luterbach. “We encourage the Airdrie community to be part of this engagement and help to provide the Board with as much information as possible.”

The community engagement program will be available from the fall of 2023 to April of 2024 and will be divided into two phases: a phase of information sharing this fall that will give stakeholders access to information, resources, and a chance to ask questions. The second being a phase of feedback that will provide options for gathering feedback, gathering information, and having discussions both in-person and online in the early months of 2024.

All information about the engagement will be available HERE. At its open meeting on April 25, 2024, the Board hopes to make a decision that will go into effect at the beginning of the 2025–2026 school year, giving families and staff some time to adjust.

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