Catholic division reviews school projects

A new high school set to open by 2016 is seen as a positive step for Red Deer Regional Catholic Regional Schools, but there is still more work to be done to ready the division for a growing population.

A new high school set to open by 2016 is seen as a positive step for Red Deer Regional Catholic Regional Schools, but there is still more work to be done to ready the division for a growing population.

Several more capital projects were reviewed at the most recent school board meeting, with upgrades to two Red Deer schools at the top of the list.

Board chair Guy Pelletier said one of the top priorities is a new addition to St. Francis of Assisi Middle School, adding capacity for 120 students.

The board wants to build a two-storey addition to the southeast portion of the school with four classrooms and a Career and Technology Studies lab. As well four portables will be brought in and attached to the school.

A second high school will allow the board to move some portables from Notre Dame High School to St. Francis.

With the increased capacity from the project, students in English language programs will be moved from Ecole Camille J. Lerouge to St. Francis, leaving Camille J. Lerouge a solely French school.

“It’s a bit of a domino cycle,” said Pelletier.

“Camille is our most overcapacity school. It’s sitting at close to 130 per cent, so it is really bad.”

St. Francis was built with capacity for 485 students, but had the ability to expand to 700 with upgrades.

According to the board’s capital plan, the school has 483 students this year.

There are several other requests on the board’s three-year capital plan, including a hope for a kindergarten to Grade 9 school in Blackfalds and the modernization of St. Matthew Catholic School in Rocky Mountain House.

“About 200 kids from Blackfalds are being bused into Red Deer now,” said Pelletier.

“That’s a really active community out there.”

The new high school is scheduled to be built and opened for the start of the 2016-17 school year. St. Joseph High School will have Grade 10 to 12 students.

Located in the northeast quadrant of Red Deer, it will be designed to accommodate up to 1,200 students with an initial capacity for 900 students.

“The new priority No. 1 is the five-classroom permanent addition to St. Francis, followed up by Blackfalds and then the St. Patrick’s modernization,” said Pelletier.

“St. Patrick’s has been on the list for a long time and the unfortunate thing about modernizations in a division that is growing like we are is that they have a hard time making it to the top priority.”

Because other projects get in the way, Pelletier said they are working on different strategies to update the school, keeping in mind that the new school requirements for the division aren’t going away.

In February when members of the Progressive Conservative government toured the province announcing new schools and modernization funding, only the high school was announced for the Catholic division.

Pelletier is hopeful more modernizations will be announced going forward and hoping to get the St. Patrick’s project done.

“We keep lobbying hard for the permanent builds we need to serve new students,” said Pelletier.

mcrawford@bprda.wpengine.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney speaks during a news conference in Edmonton on Feb. 24, 2020. It’s budget day in the province, and Kenney’s United Conservative government is promising more help in the fight against COVID, but more red ink on the bottom line. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Alberta’s budget promises more help for COVID-19 with a hard deficit

EDMONTON — Alberta’s COVID-19-era budget made a hard landing Thursday with an… Continue reading

The expansion of the Red Deer Regional Hospital Centre has been discussed for over a decade. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Red Deer hospital expansion gets about $6 million in 2021 provincial budget

According to the government’s three-year plan, the project will get $59 million by 2024.

The Town of Sylvan Lake has launched a new contest to attract a new business. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Sylvan Lake offering rent-free storefront space to lure new businesses

Winning business proposal will get a storefront space rent-free for a year

Red Deer Rebels forward Josh Tarzwell is hoping to pick up where he left off last season as the 2020-21 WHL season kicks off Friday in Red Deer against the Medicine Hat Tigers. (Photo by BYRON HACKETT/Advocate Staff)
Rebels set to host Tigers in WHL season opener

24-game WHL Alberta only season kicks off night Friday at the Centrium

An arrest by Red Deer RCMP is facing online scrutiny. No charges have been laid and the incident is still under investigation. (Screenshot of YouTube video)
Red Deer RCMP investigating violent arrest caught on video

Police say officer ‘acted within the scope of his duties’

Calgary Flames defenceman Mark Giordano tries to help goaltender David Rittich stop a shot from Ottawa Senators right wing Drake Batherson during first-period NHL action Thursday, February 25, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Colin White scores two goals to lead Ottawa Senators to a 6-1 win over Calgary Flames

Colin White scores two goals to lead Ottawa Senators to a 6-1 win over Calgary Flames

Commander of the Royal Canadian Navy Vice-Admiral Art McDonald is seen during an interview with The Canadian Press in Ottawa, Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Military reeling as new defence chief steps aside amid allegations of misconduct

Military reeling as new defence chief steps aside amid allegations of misconduct

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney speaks during a news conference in Edmonton on Feb. 24, 2020. It’s budget day in the province, and Kenney’s United Conservative government is promising more help in the fight against COVID, but more red ink on the bottom line. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Alberta’s budget promises more help for COVID-19 with a hard deficit

Alberta’s budget promises more help for COVID-19 with a hard deficit

‘Black box’ in Woods SUV could yield clues to cause of wreck

‘Black box’ in Woods SUV could yield clues to cause of wreck

Team Saskatchewan skip Sherry Anderson reacts to her shot against Team Quebec at the Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Calgary, Alta., Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Peterson’s wild-card team edges N.W.T. skip Galusha to qualify for championship pool

Peterson’s wild-card team edges N.W.T. skip Galusha to qualify for championship pool

No-size-fits-all residence approach a reality for Canadian Hockey League teams

No-size-fits-all residence approach a reality for Canadian Hockey League teams

FILE - New York Rangers' Henrik Lundqvist reacts after a save during the third period of an NHL hockey game against the Philadelphia Flyers in New York, in this Sunday, March 1, 2020, file photo. The Flyers defeated the Rangers 5-3. Star goalie Henrik Lundqvist will sit out the upcoming NHL season because of a heart condition, announcing the news a little more than two months after joining the Washington Capitals. Lundqvist posted a written statement and a videotaped one on social media Thursday, Dec. 17, 2020, saying it was a "pretty tough and emotional day." The 38-year-old from Sweden was bought out by the New York Rangers after 15 seasons and signed a $1.5 million, one-year deal with Washington in October. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)
Lundqvist back on ice, ‘months’ away from deciding future

Lundqvist back on ice, ‘months’ away from deciding future

Kiiwetinoong MPP Sol Mamakwa holds up water collected from Neskantaga First Nation, where residents were evacuated over tainted water in October, during a rally at Queen's Park in Toronto on Friday, Nov. 6, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Carlos Osorio
Feds didn’t supply enough resources to end water advisories on First Nations: auditor

Feds didn’t supply enough resources to end water advisories on First Nations: auditor

Most Read