Province begins plans for new West Shore secondary school

Province begins plans for new West Shore secondary school
(L-R) Amanda Dowhy, SD62's board chair, Ravi Parmar, MLA for Langford-Juan de Fuca, and Mitzi Dean, minister of state for child care, announcing a planning process for a new secondary school at the SĆIȺNEW̱ SṮEȽIṮḴEȽ construction site on May 21, 2024.

The B.C. government announced it will start the planning process to build a new secondary school in the West Shore.

The Sooke School District (SD62) currently has five secondary schools and one online school with a total of 3,914 secondary students registered as of Nov. 7, 2023.

Rachna Singh, minister of education and child care, says people continue to choose to move to B.C., meaning there is need for more education spaces.

“That’s why we’re taking action by supporting new secondary school projects in one of the fastest-growing school districts in the province,” she said.

Ravi Parmar, MLA for Langford-Juan de Fuca, says this builds on work he started when he was a student at the former Belmont Secondary School.

“More than 10 years ago, I started advocating for two new schools in the West Shore, and I’m now proud to be an MLA delivering an investment to begin planning for a new high school in Langford,” Parmar said. “The creation of a new, modern school for students to live, play and grow is going to benefit Langford for generations to come.”

This adds to the number of projects the provincial government has underway to build and expand schools in SD62. SĆIȺNEW̱ SṮEȽIṮḴEȽ Elementary is currently under construction, as is an expansion to Royal Bay Secondary School. Pexsisen Elementary and Centre Mountain Lellum Middle School were also recently completed and opened in the district.

The province says it has spent around $270 million to build roughly 2,660 new student seats in the district.

“We will continue to ensure that all students have the opportunity to thrive and grow in safe, modern spaces. This is why we will keep building and enhancing schools in the Sooke School District and throughout B.C.” said Mitzi Dean, minister of state for child care. “We will continue to invest in the Langford school community.”

Also for the district, the province recently announced $11.84 million to replace Port Renfrew Elementary.

READ PREVIOUS: Port Renfrew Elementary to be replaced with almost $12M from B.C. government

“In recent years, our experiences in school construction and design have underscored the vital importance of community engagement, particularly in shaping secondary sites,” said Amanda Dowhy, board chair of the Sooke School District.

“We are dedicated to collaborating closely with our community partners to ensure that our proposal reflects the collective aspirations and makes the most efficient use of the land and resources we have. Together, we strive to create a secondary school that not only caters to the needs of today’s students but also inspires and serves future generations.”

Laura BroughamLaura Brougham

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