New École La Vallée will strengthen francophone community in Pemberton

PEMBERTON, BC – September 5, 2023

Francophone families in Pemberton will have a new school for K-12 students and a permanent home for École La Vallée to support existing and forecast enrolment growth.

“Pemberton has a thriving francophone community that will benefit from a permanent new school closer to families who need it,” said Rachna Singh, Minister of Education. “With funding now in place, we can start developing a modern school that francophone students and their families have been waiting for.”

École La Vallée will offer education in French for students from kindergarten to Grade 12 with its own dedicated school. The school will create 220 new student seats, with the flexibility to add as many 150 new seats in the future.

The project will also include a neighbourhood learning centre, which will primarily be used for French-language child care while providing a convenient dropoff location for parents who also have school-aged children. Additionally, the school district has planned a number of community spaces which will help bring francophone families together for recreational classes and events.

“Child care on school grounds makes life easier for families as it provides parents with peace of mind through one drop-off and pick-up location,” said Grace Lore, Minister of State for Child Care. “Our government is prioritizing child care as we build new schools, and I know a child care centre offering care for francophone children will be a welcome addition to this project.”

In keeping with the Province’s CleanBC emissions-reduction goals, the school will include hybrid mass-timber construction, as part of the Province’s Mass Timber Action Plan. These innovative low-carbon building materials will help reduce greenhouse-gas emissions throughout the building’s lifetime.

“The Conseil scolaire francophone (CSF) is proud to announce that we have received government approval for the construction of a new school in Pemberton,” said Marie-Pierre Lavoie, board chair, CSF. “This is excellent news for students at École La Vallée and the region’s francophone community. In just a few years, students from kindergarten through high school will finally have a new school to attend. We would like to thank the Government of British Columbia and all our partners for their commitment to making this project a reality.”

Since September 2017, the Province has provided the CSF with more than $58.9 million for site purchases in Burnaby, Kamloops, Penticton, Victoria, Pemberton and Smithers, as well as more than $23.7 million for École Beausoleil in Victoria, La Grande-ourse in Smithers and a new gymnasium addition at École des-Deux-Rives in Mission. The Province also provided funding to help CSF establish a capital project office to more efficiently co-ordinate and deliver capital projects for francophone students and their families throughout B.C.

Since September 2017, the Government of B.C. has also announced 24,000 new student spaces and 35,000 seismically safer seats. This is thanks to almost $3.9 billion the Province has provided for new and improved schools, as well as land purchases for future schools throughout the province.

View original article.