SURREY — New Democrat Leader John Horgan says his party, if elected to provincial government on May 9, will replace Surrey school portables with “real” classrooms.
“Surrey is one of the fastest-growing areas in B.C.,” Horgan noted. “More than 1,000 new students are coming into Surrey schools each year. Christy Clark’s failure to plan for growth has resulted in more than ten per cent of Surrey students — 7,000 kids — learning in portables.
While stumping in Surrey on Wednesday afternoon, at Riverside Elementary school, Horgan said an NDP government will replace Surrey portables with “real classrooms” and building new schools here, deliver “stable and proper education funding to ensure kids have the support they need to thrive,” and work with civic governments and First Nations to “build and upgrade schools in every region.”
Moreover, Horgan said, an NDP government would build these new schools with “made-in-B.C.” manufactured wood products “where possible, spurring growth and creating jobs in our forestry communities.
“We’re going to make sure that students get every chance to succeed,” he said. “We’re going to build schools that create jobs for people and get Surrey students into real classrooms.”
Horgan said that $15,000 comes out of the local school district’s operating budget for every Surrey portable — money that could be used on programs for students. Getting students out of portables would free up money to hire more teachers, he said.
Horgan said an NDP government would invest $10 billion in capital infrastructure to build schools, hospitals, public transit projects and “other infrastructure that works for B.C.”
This would create 96,000 jobs over five years, he said.