Surrey: The council of City of Surrey has voted to declare the state of school infrastructure a crisis.
In a press release, the City said during a regular council meeting on Monday, the council directed the staff to organize a meeting between the City, Surrey School District, Minister of Housing and Minister of Education and Child Care to “remediate this crisis situation immediately.”
“The state of school infrastructure in Surrey has reached a crisis level,” said Mayor Brenda Locke.
“The pressure to create more housing cannot be done in isolation. Core infrastructure such as schools must be built in lock step with new housing. It’s shocking to hear that by September 2024, we may have nearly 400 portables across our city,” the Mayor said.
“I know the Board of Education has continually advocated for funding from the Province, but we’re not seeing the action that our community so desperately needs. We know that without rapid investment, our schools are facing a dire situation. We need action and investment in building more schools in Surrey now,” she said in a statement.
According to the City, Surrey School District saw more than 2,200 new students enroll this past September, bringing the student population to over 78,0000.
Based on population estimates, enrolment is projected to continue increasing at a rapid pace in almost every community, said the City.
The City of Surrey said it is concerning as many of Surrey’s schools are already operating far over capacity as population growth continues to outpace available space.