Red Deer Public Schools must continue to wait for a new middle school.
On Friday, the province announced design funding for a new Grade 6 to 9 middle school for Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools, and a new Grade 9 to 12 Blackfalds high school for Wolf Creek Public Schools.
The provincial 2019 capital plan includes $397 million for 25 projects — 15 new schools, six schools slated for replacement and four modernizations or additions.
“We’re disappointed that our needs aren’t going to be met with the government’s capital projects plan. Our middle schools are already at capacity,” said Nicole Buchanan, chair of the Red Deer public school board.
This fall, the district opened its new Westpark Middle School to replace a 50-year-old facility.
“We’re extremely happy with Westpark Middle School. But it’s already at capacity.”
A new $18-million Grade 6 to 8 school in Timberlands, with capacity for 600 students, has been a priority for the district since at least 2015.
“I’m not sure what we’re going to do just yet. With our enrolment growth, we’re running out of space. There might be a boundary review,” Buchanan said.
A $15-million modernization at Hunting Hills High School jumped to the top of the district’s capital plan earlier this year. The school requires a new roof, mechanical and electrical upgrades, and a small addition.
Other priorities include the modernization of Gateway Christian School, Fairview Elementary School, Glendale School and Eastview Middle School, along with a new Grade 9 to 12 high school in north Red Deer.