Expansion at BX Elementary is underway to create 240 new spaces at the school. (Vernon School District photo)

Expansion project to nearly double the size of Okanagan school

“With 10 new classrooms on the way, students are one step closer to saying goodbye to portables”

An expansion project that will nearly double the size of a Vernon elementary school is moving forward.

Construction is underway on a 240-seat addition to BX Elementary on Silver Star Road, which is currently operating at nearly 150 per cent capacity.

“With 10 new classrooms on the way, students are one step closer to saying goodbye to portables at BX Elementary school,” said Minister of Education Rob Fleming.

“I can’t wait to see every student at BX learning in classrooms that keep them fully connected to the great school community they have in Vernon.”

The province is providing $11.1 million for the expansion that will nearly double the number of seats in the school. The Vernon Board of Education contributed $425,000 towards the project, according to a B.C. Government press release Wednesday, July 15.

Many students already spend full days days in portables and enrolment is also expected to increase in the coming years, the province said.

Without the addition, the province says the school would have to double its number of portables in the next 10 years. Once complete, the addition will provide space for all currently enrolled students and accommodate new families moving into the community.

“Vernon is a great place to live, and School District 22 is a great place to learn,” said Robert Lee, board chair of the Vernon School District. “These classrooms will allow all students and staff to be in one building and will enhance the inclusive and collaborative learning environment at BX Elementary.”

The announcement from the province comes roughly three months after School District 22 announced that work had begun at the site of the expansion

The project is expected to be completed by September 2021.

The B.C. Government’s 2020 budget includes $2.8 billion for new or improved schools in the province.

READ MORE: BX Elementary to receive City of Vernon sewer services

READ MORE: B.C. government prepares for COVID-19 economic recovery efforts


Brendan Shykora
Reporter, Vernon Morning Star
Email me at Brendan.Shykora@vernonmorningstar.com
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