Laurae McNally

‘We can’t keep up. We need some help here.’

Surrey trustee wants city to help lobby for school building money.

Surrey’s board of education hopes the City of Surrey will join the fight to get provincial funding for more schools.

At the urging of Trustee Laurae McNally, Surrey school trustees are requesting an urgent meeting with mayor and council to speak about the city’s rapid growth and the immediate need for additional student space.

“I am very, very concerned,” said McNally. “We’re in desperate need of capital and something needs to be done.”

She pointed to the 1,000 new residents moving to the area each month – about 19 per cent of whom are under 18. She also noted the 500 births per month at Surrey Memorial Hospital, as well as the 800-900 per year at Peace Arch Hospital.

There are currently more than 6,000 students learning in portables because so many Surrey schools are over capacity.

“The longer we don’t get capital money, the worse it gets. It’s just not fair to our children,” McNally said, adding the portable classrooms are also extremely costly.

“Everywhere I go, I meet people who are just aghast when they find out we have to pay $4.1 million per year for these blinking portables in our district.”

While technically school district business, McNally says the city has a responsibility, too.

“If they’re going to keep approving these developments – and I’m not anti-development – they need to step up to the plate and understand what it’s doing to our schools and voice their concerns.”

The provincial government repeatedly defends its position, noting it’s spent about $300 million on capital projects, land and seismic upgrades in Surrey since 2001.

McNally says trustees appreciate what they’ve received but it’s simply not keeping up with the growth.

“Instead of looking back, let’s deal with the present. We can’t keep up. We need some help here,” she says.

 

Just Posted

Noted fiddlers bring kids to Surrey stage for ‘A Celtic Family Christmas’ concert

Bell theatre date for Natalie MacMaster and Donnell Leahy as they reunite for 23-city tour of Canada

Surrey-based business donates $1M to hospital’s children centre improvements

Surrey Hospital Foundation kicks off campaign for ‘transformation’ of children’s centre

OUR VIEW: Surrey’s unsung heroes inspire

The Now-Leader was proud to celebrate some deserving unsung heroes in this city on Wednesday night

North Delta family raising money for brain cancer treatment

23-year-old Tashina Janus and her family are raising funds to get her immunotherapy in the U.S.

Surrey opera singer brings Mozart’s ‘Così fan tutte’ to Vancouver stage

Nancy Hasiuk-Lay has been hailed for her ‘sparkling and crystalline vocal tone’

Metro Vancouver mayors cancel Surrey LRT in favour of SkyTrain

Surrey mayor claims he can extend Skytrain for the $1.65 billion already committed to light rail

Hunter who saved B.C. man pinned inside smashed truck says ‘God was sending me to him’

Sayward man describes chance discovery of Duncan Moffat, 23, in northern Vancouver Island woods

Road-weary Canucks thumped 6-2 by Wild

Vancouver hosts the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday

Toronto private school didn’t report alleged sexual assault to police

Police say a sexual assault at an all-boys Catholic institution was not reported to them

China says butt out; Canada calls for release of “arbitrarily” detained Muslims

A Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman accused Canada’s envoy of going beyond their diplomatic roles

Dead Saskatoon tattoo artist’s skin removed and preserved

The skin was removed in honour of the well known artist’s work

Lower Mainland couple missing in Thompson-Okanagan area

Barriere RCMP received a missing persons report for two senior overdue travellers

Vancouver Warriors cancel first 2 weeks of season as labour dispute continues

The announcement means games scheduled for Dec. 1 and Dec. 8 will no longer be played

B.C. Realtor suspended after helping intern forge note about sick grandma

Vancouver real estate agent Jaideep Singh Puri has to pay fine, take ethics course

Most Read