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EMSB finds solutions to address overcrowding problems at Willingdon and Edinburgh

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Montreal - Thursday, February 21, 2019

The English Montreal School Board Council of Commissioners has arrived at some solutions to address overcrowding problems at two West End elementary schools, Willingdon in NDG and Edinburgh in Montreal West.

Beginning in the 2019-2020 academic year, Willingdon will operate a second building on Coronation Avenue to house Grade 5 and 6 students. Edinburgh, meanwhile, will receive four modular classrooms with the aim of bringing enrolment down to their maximum capacity of 100 percent over a four year period. Mobiles will be reduced by one per year. The Directorate has instructed the Edinburgh administration to limit kindergarten registration to two classes per year until the overcrowding issue is resolved.

The EMSB Material Resources Department will now proceed to prepare a call for tenders to rent and install the modular classrooms by the end of August.

In order to accommodate the new senior campus for Willingdon, students from two alternative high schools- Focus and Outreach- will be relocated from the Coronation Avenue facility to their own space at James Lyng High School in St. Henri.

Willingdon will now be able to free up valuable space at its main building on Terrebonne Avenue while enabling Cycle 3 students to have more creative and mature learning space where they can truly focus and develop their work-habits and problem-solving skills in preparation for high school.

“We believe this facility has the potential to broaden the educational and social offerings of our school, grow our student body, meet new and increased demand in NDG, and ultimately widen the Willingdon community and the education al impacts that have been cultivated up until now,” stated Principal Carmen Nicolas and Governing Board Chair Eric Lamoureux.

The Governing Board emphasizes that the senior campus will ease space constraints at the current building and improve facilities for the younger students as well. By expanding, Willingdon could protect all of its specialist spaces and programs (Music, Science, Tech Lab,Library, Resource Room, Behaviour Tech Room, Sensory Room) and have more room to keep growing without sacrificing quality or both the younger and older students, there would be access to additional green space. At the new location there is access to three soccer fields, a park with play structures and a treed area with a field. Phys ed classes could be expanded and take on new activities. The facility also has several fully equipped kitchens, which could support diverse Science and health classes.

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