Leduc residents had their first opportunity last month to review and provide feedback on a number of options presented in the ongoing Leduc Schools Boundary and Grade Configuration Review via the Black Gold School Division’s Let’s Connect BGSD engagement site.
The online survey, available from April 5-19, drew approximately 4,800 visits, 529 information downloads, and 356 submissions.
The survey revealed that the Division, along with residents in the community, is concerned with the utilization rates at schools in the fast-growing city, with the majority of respondents expressing that the review was timely and that specific recommendations would allow for better utilization of all schools. They also liked keeping the idea of neighbourhood schools as much as possible.
When asked about what they felt was positive about the presented options, 130 respondents indicated that they were generally in favour of the grade 7-12 school configuration, linking it to school proximity and more appropriate utilization rates. A few preferred the 8-12 and 10-12 options, feeling that it would be better for programming and student maturity levels. Respondents were also in favour of the proposed East/West boundary configuration with Highway 2 as the dividing line.
When asked about any concerns they might have with the options, 70 respondents expressed concerns with having grade 7-9 students together with those in grades 10-12. The concerns were linked to programming and differing maturity levels, and possible negative influences that older students might have on their younger peers.
Other concerns centred around school transitions, negative impacts on programming, including gym times and sports teams, and worries about the French Immersion program being consolidated in one location that may be far from their homes.
Some wanted the school division to build more schools. It should be noted that school authorities cannot build schools; only the province can. Each year, school boards must assess their school capital needs and submit their capital priorities to the Government of Alberta for consideration. Based on these submissions, the Government of Alberta prioritizes which projects to fund.
Transportation was also a concern for a few of the respondents, with 23 respondents wanting transportation and proximity to schools to be a top priority. The recently announced reductions in the eligibility distances for student bus transportation should help allay those concerns.
Regarding the new high school – Ohpaho Secondary School – currently under construction in the southwest of Leduc, a number of respondents were curious about what types of curriculum programming will be offered at the school when it opens and if programs and courses would be shared with the Leduc Composite High School.
We thank everyone who took part in this initial engagement for taking the time to review the presented options and provide comments. Your feedback will aid the administrators at all Leduc schools in determining the best course of action for the students in their care.
Read the full survey summary report.
Second Public Feedback Opportunity
A second in-person public engagement opportunity – a Public Information Open House – has been scheduled for on Wednesday, May 24. Leduc residents are invited to join us from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the large gym at the Leduc Composite High School (4308-50 St.) to review and share their thoughts on the proposed school attendance boundaries and grade configurations for schools in Leduc.
Staff will be on hand to guide attendees through the proposals and answer questions. Participants will also have the opportunity to provide comments, and all feedback will be collected and included in the final recommendation report that will be shared with the Board of Trustees as it works to make the final decision on the new school boundaries and grade configurations.
For more information about the project, please visit: www.blackgold.ca/leduc-schools-boundary-and-grade-configuration-review