More than 270 students from Carleton Elementary found out Friday morning that they will have to relocate for the entire year following a fire that broke out in the attic of the East Vancouver school last week.
Fifty firefighters battled the blaze at the historic school on Aug. 20. Crews were on the scene for several hours and the extent of the damage was unknown until this morning.
Vancouver Police told Global News they have taken over the investigation as the fire has now been deemed suspicious. However, it is still unknown what caused the fire.
The Vancouver School Board said after assessing the damage, the 274 students would need to relocate to Cunningham Elementary for the school year. The plan to move the students will not lead to job losses, the VSB added.
In June, the VSB announced Carleton Elementary would be partially closed for the 2016-2017 school year. The students were to be transferred to the brick building next door.
Shortly after this announcement, Carleton was then listed as one of the 12 schools that were being considered for potential closure by the VSB due to budget cuts.
The school board said by moving the students, it is not considered a closure or a merger and while Carleton will be housed and operated out of Cunningham, they are still two separate schools.
Parents of kids at Carleton started to protest the move shortly after the VSB’s announcement.