Should Vancouver’s school board be selling schools? Here’s what parents think about that.

Here is a pertinent Twitter thread by @PacQea (Queen Elizabeth Annex Elementary School’s Parent Advisory Committee) asking the various government bodies involved to think long term with the interests of the community in mind. We should expect no less!


Here is how it starts: VSB [Vancouver School Board aka Vancouver Board of Education] is selling schools. Before they sell, they must prove the site is “surplus” not needed to meet future enrolment growth. VSB forecasts decline. BC Ministry of Education forecasts increase. And @VanDPAC [Vancouver District Parent Advisory Council,] Vancouver parents want both scenarios tested + long term plans.

Read on!

VSB’s forecast: a decline in total future enrolment (-2,500 people in 10 years).
BC Ministry of Education’s forecast: an increase in future enrolment (+10,000 people in 10 years).

But VSB’s “decline” is not true for Elementary School enrolment — according to VSB data, Elementary School enrolment has been stable for the last 10 years.

Who’s forecast is right?
No one has a crystal ball, but September 2022 VSB enrolment figures show that BC Ministry of Education’s forecast of increased enrolment over the next 10 years has started to become true: 1,684 more students enrolled than VSB forecasted.

If BC’s projections come true, VSB will be short 2,300+ seats by 2032. That’s up to 5 more schools needed within the next 10 years.
It takes 7-9 years to plan and build a high school, elementary 5-6 years.
Number of new VSB schools currently funded? 1

Originally tweeted by QEA – PAC (@PacQea) on January 20, 2023.

Some more references

Link to the VSB’s Long Range Facilities Plan

2 thoughts on “Should Vancouver’s school board be selling schools? Here’s what parents think about that.

  1. Seriously? What is going on here! A 180 degree contradiction in data? Let this be a perfect example of how cities (or, at least the City of Vancouver) make bad decisions on the basis of incomplete and ill-obtained data. Obviously, further study with diverse parameters that address the contradictions is needed to settle the current opposing predictions. No decisions should be made about selling schools until the matter is clarified by the due diligence of academic research and discovery. Nor should the land value be the sole priority driving the sale. What is wrong with this city? Everything. What happened to the City’s responsibility to PROVIDE services to residents, instead of stripping them away while concurrently sending our taxes through the roof! We are fools to just sit and take it.

    If you really want something to think about in terms of the decline of the education our residents are obtaining, ask yourself why UBC turfed the English Composition Test and then the Language Proficiency Index exam that all students had to pass before graduating with any degree? It was due to the pressure from the increasing number of individuals who could not pass. Those tests originated because of the poor level of English of the students we were churning out of our high schools. Due to the phasing out of these essential language assessment tools, for the past few years there has been nothing to prevent the illiterate and seriously unskilled writers from being granted a degree: credentials acquired under false pretenses. I wouldn’t want them working for me, would you? Think about that if you give a hoot about education.

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