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Construction of new Kamloops school begins

June 3, 2024 at 1:33 pm  BC, News, Politics, Provincial

Construction of the new Sníne Elementary school will bring hundreds of additional student seats to benefit families in the fast-growing city of Kamloops.

“As more cities like Kamloops experience record population growth, our government is continuing to invest in our schools,” said Rachna Singh, Minister of Education and Child Care. “I’m proud that we are providing funding for a new elementary school with a neighbourhood learning centre that will benefit students and families in the Pineview Valley area for years to come.”

The Province has provided $65.3 million for the new 485-seat elementary school. The new school will serve students from kindergarten to Grade 7 and will include a learning centre, which will be used for programs and services, including child care, which will benefit the broader community.

The new school’s design uses mass timber and includes greenhouse gas reduction measures that will set the building’s emissions at least 50% lower than the current LEED Gold Standards.

“On behalf of the board of education, I want to extend our gratitude to the Ministry of Education and Child Care for funding the much-needed elementary school in Kamloops,” said Heather Grieve, Kamloops-Thompson board of education chair. “This school has been a priority for our district since 2014 due to notable enrolment growth and space pressures in nearby schools. We are proud that Sníne Elementary is the first Secwepemctsín school name in our district, representing one of many important steps in our work towards truth and reconciliation.”

This new school builds on significant investments the Province has made in the Kamloops-Thompson School District. Since September 2017, the Province has invested $32.7 million and the school district contributed an additional $1.75 million in a 525-seat addition at Valleyview Secondary, which opened in 2022. Parkcrest Elementary school is set to open in 2024 and received $34.8 million from the government with an additional $300,000 from the school district and $2.1 million from the City of Kamloops for a larger gymnasium.

To further support safe, upgraded learning environments for students, the Province is also providing the Kamloops-Thompson School District with $2.1 million for other projects at existing schools, such as heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC) upgrades at Juniper Ridge Elementary, Kamloops School of the Arts, and Sa-Hali Secondary. This additional funding will also support the purchase of new school buses.

Since September 2017, the B.C. government has provided more than $4 billion for new and improved schools, and land purchases for future schools, throughout the province. This has resulted in more than 25,000 new student spaces and more than 35,000 seismically safer seats at B.C. schools.

Budget 2024 includes $3.75 billion for school capital projects over the next three years, including new and expanded schools, seismic upgrades and replacements, and land purchases for future schools. 

Quotes:

Bonnie McBride, Kamloops-Thompson district parent advisory council president –

“The Kamloops-Thompson district parent advisory council is honoured to be part of bringing Sníne Elementary to Kamloops. We look forward to working with the Province on more learning centre builds like this one, bringing safe and accessible educational opportunities to all our neighbourhoods and families. The impact of the collaborative process that led us to today with educators, Indigenous leaders, caregivers and students coming together to make this happen, will be felt by our students for generations to come.”

Dr. Rhonda Nixon, superintendent, Kamloops-Thompson School District –

“The Kamloops-Thompson School District is growing and Sníne Elementary is a vital addition to the community. This beautiful new school will create learning opportunities and environments that will inspire students and families to thrive. We appreciate the extensive community engagement with Tk’emlups te Secwépemc chief and council, the District Aboriginal Education Council, employee executive groups, the district parent advisory council, parents, community partners and, importantly, students.”

Quick Facts:

  • After a public consultation process, the new school was named Sníne Elementary. 
  • “Sníne,” which means owl in Secwepemctsín, reflects the significance of Secwepemc culture, where the owl symbolizes wisdom and growth in traditional stories. 

Learn More:

For more information about the Burnaby School District 73, visit: https://www.sd73.bc.ca/en/index.aspx

For information about major public school capital projects underway, visit: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/education-training/k-12/administration/capital/major-capital-projects

To learn about B.C.’s Seismic Mitigation Program, visit: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/education-training/k-12/administration/capital/seismic-mitigation

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