B.C. Government committing $217M in funding for Surrey schools

Click to play video: 'Surrey schools receive massive funding boost from government'
Surrey schools receive massive funding boost from government
WATCH: Surrey parents got their wish, with the education minister announcing today he'll spend even more than the crisis funding they asked for. John Hua has more from Surrey – Jan 26, 2017

Education Minister Mike Bernier has announced the government is committing $217 million in funding for Surrey schools.

He says this will create 5,200 new spaces for students and more than 600 jobs.

The $217 million will be distributed over the next three years as part of a capital plan but it is not clear what project will be priority. However, the money will go to expand current schools and build new schools. The final decision will be left to the school board.

A coalition of parents and activists issued a desperate plea to the B.C. Government for more funding, saying half of Surrey’s 120 elementary and high schools are operating overcapacity.

Many students spend at least part of their day in portables.

READ MORE: Skyrocketing enrolment has Surrey School Board asking for halt on development

The Surrey School Coalition says the province will need to build one new elementary school a year and a new high school every two or three years to accommodate the growing population.

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On Wednesday the coalition met with Education Minister Mike Bernier, asking for $175 million for 12 priority schools.

“We know that’s not enough but we work in a realistic world and we want the ministry to work with our city and board and make it realistic and achievable,” said Karen Tan with the Surrey School Coalition.

WATCH: Surrey in desperate need for more schools:

Click to play video: 'Surrey in desperate need for more schools'
Surrey in desperate need for more schools


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