Silver Creek, Armstrong schools off the chopping block for now

The closure of two rural elementary schools in Armstrong and Silver Creek has been put on hold for a year. And while local parents are happy, the school board is now seeking a permanent solution.

“Last year we looked at absolutely everything. And this year we will be doing the same"

Armstrong Elementary was one of two schools that School District 83 had proposed closing, but it will now remain open for another year. (Google Street View)

Despite earlier signs to the contrary, Armstrong Elementary and Silver Creek Elementary will remain open, at least until next year.

The North Okanagan-Shuswap School District decided to put off a decision on closing both schools until 2017, to the relief of parents like Jamie Schrauwen, who has two children attending Armstrong Elementary.

"I think it's a big positive, that's for sure. I'm glad to see that the board is willing to look into everything before rushing into a decision," she told Radio West producer Josh Page.

"We've come up with an incredible amount of information to both save the board money as well as make the board money and find cuts elsewhere where it doesn't affect the students."

Schrauwen says she's hopeful the year-long delay will help parents and the board come up with more permanent solutions by next April.

Bobbi Johnson, chair of the North Okanagan-Shuswap Board, says the board needs to find $1.3 million in savings, and she's not sure where that money will come form if not through school consolidation and closure.

"Last year we looked at absolutely everything. And this year we will be doing the same," she told Radio West host Rebecca Zandbergen.

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