Rosscarrock School will close at the end of the school year

·2 min read

Calgary Board of Education (CBE) trustees voted unanimously at a public board meeting Tuesday to close Rosscarrock School in the city's southwest.

Trina Hurdman, trustee for wards 1 and 2 said with roughly 70 students enrolled at the school this year, it's an unfortunate, but necessary decision.

"[Community schools are] really the living beating heart of their communities, and we want to support them as much as possible ... But unfortunately, there are sometimes other realities that get in the way," she said.

"This time, it's not only financial impacts, but the low student enrolment has started to impact the learning opportunities in quite a significant way, even more so than two years ago."

Wards 11 and 13 trustee Julie Hrdlicka said after six decades serving students this is a "tough decision." But, low enrolment not only limits student opportunities, but impacts funding.

"The province requires you to have 85 per cent capacity rate for schools to receive all of their maintenance dollars, and those dollars, of course, are used to invest in infrastructure for the school," she said.

"As we've heard, Rosscarrock has capacity of 18 per cent and this just means that we're going to receive less dollars to maintain that building."

Hurdman said students and the overall system will be better served by designating these students to other nearby schools, where there is more robust programming and better social opportunities.

"Two schools that are still close by, but unfortunately not perhaps as close as they were" she said.

The CBE said last fall only six students pre-registered for Rosscarrock's kindergarten class. As a result, they were asked to enrol at two nearby schools where they will now continue.

Administration at the CBE first recommended the closure of the school in 2018.

In 2019, Rosscarrock School was saved from closure in a 4-3 vote.

Next September, students usually designated to Rosscarrock will either attend Wildwood School to the north or Glendale School to the south.