Surrey’s Grandview Heights students one step closer to new elementary school

Rob Fleming

HUNDREDS of Grandview Heights students will soon be learning in new 21st-century classrooms as construction has officially begun on the new Edgewood Drive-area elementary school.

Rob Fleming, Minister of Education, was joined by Doug McCallum, Mayor of Surrey, and Laurie Larsen, Surrey Board of Education Chair, to break ground on the new school.

“After years of underinvestment in Surrey, families are finally beginning to see what a properly resourced education system looks like with thousands of new student seats coming to Grandview Heights,” said Fleming on Thursday. “This is a great example of how our strong relationship with the Surrey Board of Education and the City of Surrey is providing better support for Surrey students.”

The new $33-million Edgewood Drive-area elementary school will add 655 new student seats to Grandview Heights when it opens in September 2021. While this budget is above what was previously approved, due to extreme construction cost escalation in 2018, government and the Surrey School District moved quickly to fund the difference to ensure students could be in their new school as soon as possible.

In addition, Grandview Heights families can look forward to a new 1,500-seat secondary school in 2021 and a 300-seat addition to Pacific Heights Elementary in 2020. In April 2018, government also approved $28.95 million for the Surrey School District to purchase land for a new elementary school in the nearby Sunnyside neighbourhood.

Work has also begun on the new Maddaugh Road elementary school, a $34.1-million project that will be open to 605 Clayton-area students in 2021.

Each of these projects was a result of the positive relationship between the Province, the City of Surrey and the Surrey Board of Education, with a common goal to get students out of portables and back into classrooms.

“We’re on a roll now with school construction in Surrey and it’s great to see,” said Larsen. “Besides the Edgewood Drive area elementary, work is under way on the 12-classroom addition at neighbouring Pacific Heights Elementary, as well as the 605-seat Maddaugh Road Elementary school in Clayton Heights. We also expect construction to start this spring on two more South Surrey schools.”

While there are about 7,000 Surrey students in portables, there are also about 7,000 new student seats that will be open by September 2021 throughout the district.

Government will continue working with the Surrey School District and the City of Surrey to keep making investments that support students by adding new class space and getting rid of portables.

Since September 2017, the Province has approved more than $211 million for capital projects in Surrey and nearly $1 billion throughout B.C. This includes new and expanded schools, seismic upgrades and land for future schools.