The proposed boundary catchment for Cloverdale elementary, which will return to a regular stream elementary school after 12 years as the Cloverdale Traditional School, a district-wide school of choice. (Screenshot from SD61)

SD61 unveils new proposed catchment areas for Victoria

Victor, South Park and Cloverdale would join regular elementary stream

The Greater Victoria School District released its proposed boundary changes on Tuesday morning, and while most catchments will remain the same, there are a few significant changes.

Among them are repurposing the South Park Family and Cloverdale Traditional schools of choice as well as the Victor (inclusive) schools as regular stream elementary schools (again). At the moment they have district-wide catchments as South Park and Cloverdale are schools of choice while Victor is designated for children, many of whom are medically assisted or are high needs, and who need additional supports for learning.

  • View the proposed SD61 catchment boundary changes here:
  • SD61 elementary school boundaries
  • SD61 middle school boundaries
  • SD61 secondary school boundaries

The other big changes are a major shift of Oak Bay High’s catchment to include a former section of Vic High’s catchment (and some switching of the family of schools), and the reopening of the currently-dormant Richmond elementary as a part of Lansdowne middle school (for Grade 6 classes only, to start).

“By adding space at Richmond we would alleviate all the middle school pressures we are currently seeing,” said SD61 secretary-treasurer Mark Walsh. “We don’t know what it would be called, the Richmond campus of Lansdowne, or South Lansdowne campus, but it’s only a 396 metre walk between the schools.”

READ MORE: Greater Victoria school board to consider reopening schools with new boundary review

South Park’s new catchment will cut into George Jay elementary’s current catchment and alleviate pressure on George Jay, which is growing over capacity. Cloverdale will do same for Quadra elementary.

It spells the end of the school of choice privileges that South Park and Cloverdale currently enjoy, such as a unique report card grading system at South Park and the traditional school uniforms worn at Cloverdale, said Walsh.

Parents at South Park were quick to take to social media to share disappointment in the decision.

“First it was the decision to cut late French immersion at two middle schools, including the only one in the city limits of Victoria, and now the decision to turn the crown jewel of the district – South Park Family School, the school’s non-catchment alternative school – into a regular catchment school,” Jeremy Caradonna, parent of two South Park students who lives in Fernwood. “The response from the school community can be described only as outrage.”

Caradonna said a group of South Park parents have aligned to contact the district trustees, school principal, and alumni including MLA Carol James former PAC chair of South Park. We will fight this decision tooth and nail, just as previous generations have had to fight this exact fight.”

Jenn Sutton, chair of South Park PAC, said South Park family school has a long and important history in the community and it would be a big loss.

“We just need to know what our options to work with the district to keep it as a program of choice.”

Audrey Smith, chair of the Victoria Confederation of Parent Advisory Councils, was at the Monday night board meeting at which the proposal was approved for public consultation.

READ MORE: Cloverdale buddies up on 100th celebration

“VCPAC has had three members on the review committee all along, and there has been concessions by everyone to get to this proposal,” Smith said. “There’s been some outside of the box thinking to get and the district is trying to be the least disruptive as possible.”

However, that won’t temper the reaction from Cloverdale and South Park parents, she said.

“Everyone who’s being disrupted, it’s real for them.”

Superintendent Shelley Green said the district tried to be thoughtful when considering all of the potential options and outcomes. Unfortunately, Green added, there is no option where everything can remain the same so we are trying to find the best solution.

“We hope through further consultation we are able to find the solutions that accommodate and take into consideration all members of our learning community,” she said.

South Park, which dates back to the early 1900s, was a regular stream elementary school until a few decades ago and has since been a family-themed school. Cloverdale was a regular stream elementary school until 2006.

SD61 will host three open houses for public consultation, Feb. 6, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. in the Spectrum Community secondary gymnasium, Feb. 13, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Lansdowne in the gym and Feb. 16, 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. in the Victoria High Andrews gymnasium.

reporter@saanichnews.com


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Food safety a good practice amid COVID-19 concerns

BC Centre for Disease Control offers useful food safe information for households

Sidney’s top emergency official says he is not aware of any COVID-19 cases in the community

The public Sunday also heard of future plans to help local businesses through tax deferments

COVID-19: Victoria plumbing company dedicates van for grocery delivery

The Super Plumber uses van to pick up groceries for those in need during COVID-19 pandemic

Digitization of Peninsula News Review by Sidney Museum and Archives preserves historical legacy

Searchable database will ease research and preserve integrity of records

COVID-19: A message from the publisher

We will be making some changes to our print editions during these unprecedented times

Evening world update: U.S. restrictions extended 30 days; NY deaths near 1,000

Comprehensive world update, with the latest developments in the COVID-19 crisis

‘It’s up to us: Recently-returned B.C. couple urges Canadians to take COVID-19 seriously

Garrett Kucher and Tory Apostoliuk make it home after almost a week of lockdown in Spain

‘Nothing concrete’: Tenants, landlords lack details after B.C. unveils COVID-19 rental aid

Single mom in Golden says she’s already going to the food bank after being laid off

Canada will make sure masks sent by China meet quality standards: Trudeau

Chinese Embassy tweeted that China was sending 30,000 medical masks along with gowns, gloves and goggles

B.C. issues guidelines about distancing, reusable bags to grocery stores amid COVID-19

Hand sanitizer and markers to keep lines two metres are apart are needed, province says

No plans to call in military right now to enforce COVID-19 quarantine: Trudeau

Trudeau unveils $7.5M for Kids Help Phone, $9M for vulnerable seniors amid COVID-19

QUIZ: How much do you know about the Olympics?

Put your knowledge to the test with these 12 questions

Most Read