More language programs coming to Surrey schools in fall

New classes at Cougar Creek Elementary and possibly T.E. Scott; District will also look at moving French programs at crowded schools.

A new early French immersion (FI) program will start at Cougar Creek Elementary in the fall, and trustees hope to establish another Punjabi language program in Surrey in the coming school year.

The addition of the French program is, in part, in response to long waiting lists for parents wishing to enrol their children in FI in kindergarten.

The Cougar Creek program, located at 12236 70A Ave., will mean seven of Surrey’s 101 elementary schools now offer early French immersion. Parents with kids on existing wait lists will be contacted first for possible registration.

The program addition is one of several recommendations made in a Surrey School District staff report recently endorsed by Surrey Board of Education trustees. The Long Range Facilities and Education Plan, available to view at http://bit.ly/1dmdel3, contains more than 40 wide-ranging proposals regarding the district’s future direction and program and facility priorities.

Extensive public consultations on choice programs earlier this year showed a public desire to expand so-called ‘choice’ program expansion, particularly French Immersion.

“Our board heard loud and clear our parents value the quality and variety of our programs of choice, and they want more,” said board chairperson Shawn Wilson. “While we continue to be challenged for space because of ongoing growth, trustees support staff’s recommendations to find ways to meet the widespread desire for these programs.”

Subject to community consultations,  trustees also hope to give the go-ahead to a new Punjabi language program at T.E. Scott Elementary (7079 148 St.) that would begin in September.

A recent survey of Grade 4 parents at 10 Surrey elementary schools with the highest proportion of Punjabi-speaking families indicated more than 30 families would register their child for a Punjabi language class in Grade 5 if one was available.

Punjabi is already offered at three elementary schools (Beaver Creek, Newton and Strawberry Hill) and two high schools (Princess Margaret and Tamanawis).

Trustees have also requested district staff review policies regarding programs of choice and consult parents about whether registration priority for siblings should be modified.

Currently, children on wait lists with siblings already in programs get priority over others. As an example of how that could affect the registration process, the district said of the 250 on the wait list for Fine Arts program, most of the new spaces available each year are filled by siblings.

Trustees already altered the registration process for some programs this year, changing it from a one-day, first-come-first-served, phone-in session to a three-week online application process where applicants are chosen by random draw.

Another change on the horizon is the possibility of moving a couple of current French immersion programs that are at crowded schools.

District staff say that when the new high school in the North Clayton area opens – hopefully sometime in 2017-2018 – approximately 600 students will need to be relocated from overflowing Lord Tweedsmuir (LT) Secondary, which has 2,000 students and has been on an double-bell schedule for five years. One option would be to move the French Immersion program at LT to the new high school. The district hopes to consult with the school community during the coming year to explore options.

The district will also examine the possibility of relocating the FI program that’s presently at Woodward Hill Elementary. Because the Sullivan area is growing rapidly, schools in the area are pressed for space, with the biggest impact felt at Woodward Hill.

 

Just Posted

New West mayor says Surrey won’t be left out in transit 10-year plan

Jonathan Cote one of two speakers at luncheon focusing on transportation, land use planning

UPDATE: Missing Surrey snowshoer found dead on Mt. Seymour

North Shore Rescue resumed its search today after efforts were temporarily halted Tuesday due to snowstorm

UPDATE: Woman, off-duty cop in critical condition after stabbing outside North Delta elementary school

The officer was intervening in an alleged assault outside of Immaculate Conception School when he and the woman were stabbed

Suspect charged after four Surrey banks were robbed in just four hours

Financial institutions in North Surrey targeted on Feb. 12

Surrey says WorkSafeBC should be in charge of asbestos abatement

City staff say WorkSafeBC has ‘greater knowledge, experience and expertise’ concerning asbestos

VIDEO: Nail-biter game against Germany tonight earns Langley’s Team Canada a win

Langley’s Team Tardi is 5-2 at the junior curling worlds in Nova Scotia, hoping to defend their title

Ontario man accused of killing 11-year-old daughter dies in hospital, police say

Roopesh Rajkumar had been hospitalized with what police described as a self-inflicted gunshot wound

Manitoba ‘pauses’ link with ex-B.C. premier Gordon Campbell after allegations

Campbell had been hired to review two major hydro projects

Heritage minute features Japanese-Canadian baseball team, internment

The Vancouver Asahi baseball team won various championships across the Pacific Northwest

$10-a-day child care not in 2019 budget, but advocate not irked

Sharon Gregson with the Coalition of Child Care Advocates of B.C. says NDP on track to deliver promise

B.C. Seniors Advocate questions labour shortage in care homes

Are there really no workers, or are care aide wages too low?

B.C. business groups worry about looming economic decline in wake of NDP budget

The party’s second government budget focused on plenty of spending, business advocates say

Man injured in police shooting near Nelson has died: B.C. police watchdog

The death follows an incident in Bonnington on Feb. 13

Experts urge caution after 10 human-triggered avalanches across B.C.

One man is still stuck after avalanche on south coast

Most Read

l -->