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Seismic upgrades complete at Edith Cavell Elementary

CANADA, July 10 - More Vancouver students have access to safer learning environments now that seismic upgrades are complete at Edith Cavell Elementary.

“Making schools seismically safer throughout B.C. is a top priority for our government,” said Rachna Singh, Minister of Education and Child Care. “We’ve made great progress seismically upgrading and replacing schools in Vancouver. There is still more to do and we are committed to continuing to work with the Vancouver School Board to ensure students have safe, modern learning environments.”

Edith Cavell Elementary was built in 1920 and was seismically upgraded with $15.6 million in support from the Province to create 290 seismically safer seats.

In its continued effort to make Vancouver schools seismically safer for students and staff, the Province is also providing as much as $29.2 million to fund a seismic upgrade at Sir Wilfred Grenfell Elementary. Once complete, the school will have capacity for 465 students with upgrades to all classrooms, the gymnasium, library and administrative offices. The StrongStart program and the daycare at the school will continue to operate.

During construction, students will be temporarily accommodated at another site in the district. Design of the school will begin in fall 2023 and is anticipated to be ready for students by fall 2026.

“It’s important that students and staff can feel safe at school,” said Adrian Dix, MLA for Vancouver-Kingsway. “The seismic upgrades at Sir Wilfred Grenfell will make this school better for students, staff, families and the community.”

George Heyman, MLA for Vancouver-Fairview, said: “I know parents, students and staff have been long awaiting the completion of seismic upgrades at Edith Cavell Elementary. It’s great to see students move back into this improved and safer school.”

Since September 2017, approximately $360 million has been invested in the Vancouver School District to seismically upgrade or replace 13 schools in Vancouver.

“Thanks to the funding from the Ministry of Education and Childcare, we are now one step closer to our shared vision of ensuring all children in the district have access to seismically safe schools,” said Victoria Jung, chair, Vancouver School Board. “The funding received has enabled us to undertake vital seismic work at not only one but two of our schools, reinforcing our unwavering dedication to the safety and well-being of our students.”

The Province has provided $3.4 billion for new and improved schools, as well as land purchases for future schools throughout B.C. since September 2017. This includes adding approximately 23,000 new student spaces and 33,000 seismically safer seats in public schools.

Budget 2023 includes $3.4 billion for school capital investments to provide better places for students to learn.