September 5, 2017 12:19 pm
Updated: September 5, 2017 8:36 pm

New school year means 14 new schools in Edmonton

WATCH ABOVE: Ivor Dent is one of nine new Edmonton public schools opening its doors. Erin Chalmers was there Tuesday morning for the first day of school.

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A record number of new schools opened their doors on the first day of the new school year in Edmonton.

Nine public and five Catholic schools opened for the first time Tuesday to accommodate 6,500 students. It’s the largest number of new schools to open on the same day in Edmonton in over a century.

READ MORE: All new Edmonton Catholic, public schools ready to open next week

Watch below: Thousands of Alberta kids are back in class after summer break. Some of them are getting to learn in brand new schools. Quinn Ohler reports.


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With an influx of young families in new neighbourhoods, the new schools are coming at a perfect time.

About 3,800 students are registered at Edmonton public’s new schools, with capacity of about 9,400 students.

Ivor Dent is one of those schools. The kindergarten to Grade 9 school at 110 Ave and 32 Street is unique in Edmonton because of its amalgamation of three schools and an investment into a mature neighbourhood.

“Historically, we haven’t been building new schools in mature neighbourhoods and often when we’re closing schools, we’re closing into old structures,” Edmonton Public School Board executive director Lorne Parker said.

“This is a different model. We’re closing three schools, but they’re moving into a state-of-the-art school.”

Watch Below: Ivor Dent School is one of 14 new schools that opened in Edmonton on Tuesday. Erin Chalmers spoke with Ivor Dent’s principal about the big day.

Ivor Dent principal Lynn Schlacht said the school offers important services for its students and parents.

“A lot of our students are new Canadians and felt especially valued because of the investment in their future. It’s really neat,” Schlacht said.

“We have a lot of family supports working with our families and there’s space built into the design for that, so parents know what to expect from the school and their kids will get what they need.”

READ MORE: Widow of fallen Const. Woodall humbled by Edmonton school given his name

Watch Below: A parent explains why he’s excited to see his children attend the new Ivor Dent School.

Chris Anderson has five children, some of whom are attending Ivor Dent, and he’s thrilled his kids have the opportunity to learn in a modern school.

“The technology is something that’s continuing to happen all the time, so with the kids being able to be absorbed into that and being able to get a handle on it now, it’ll definitely be able to help in the future when they get out of school,” Anderson said.

READ MORE: 2 Edmonton schools scheduled to open in September won’t be ready

Two more Edmonton public schools will open in January after being initially scheduled to open this fall. Parker said students will start the year at different schools, in their own classrooms, and move as a unit to the new schools in the new year.

The focus will now turn towards building new high schools to deal with growth pressure.

 

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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