By David F. Rooney
The city’s newest school — Begbie View Elementary (BVE) — is almost ready.
Despite the predictions of some, School District 19 Superintendent Anne Cooper said in an interview Tuesday that the new facility will open as scheduled at the beginning of the school year next month.
“The school is coming along very well,” she said. “Right now the school has, for occupancy purposes, three zones. Zone A is the early learning hub, including Kindergarten and Strong Start. Zone B is the gymnasium, the Acrobats’ facility, the kids’ washrooms, speech and language and the multi-purpose room — it’s basically the back half of the school and is two storeys. Zone C is all the new construction since we demolished the high school, which is the really the core school.”
Cooper said a lot of materials have been moved from Mount Begbie and Mountain View, the two elementary schools that were decommissioned and closed at the end of the 2011/2012 school year.
“I think we’ll be in very good shape a full two weeks prior to Labour Day,” she said. “I’m very pleased because we knew it was going to be tight.”
In fact, it was looking so tight that some people in town had predicted the new school, Begbie View Elementary, would not be ready to open in time for the resumption of classes in the first week of September.
Cooper is very relieved that the move is proceeding smoothly and is happy with Graham Construction’s adherence to the timetable.
“We’re right on target,” she said. “We’re not behind by one little bit.”
So, in just a few weeks the new school’s doors will be open for business and that will have a significant impact on the district. Having a brand-new school with more light, fresh air and a vibrant, stimulating environment cannot but help excite children and motivate their studies. It will also have a major impact on the district’s bottom line as it may well divest itself of the old schools. And it will free up funds that can be used to brighten Columbia Park and Arrow Heights Elementary Schools.
Cooper said the media will be invited on a tour of the building prior to the start of the school year. The Current will gladly post an In Pictures photo feature the day that happens. Stay tuned. We’ll keep you posted.
In the meantime, here are some images of the move in progress: