Westgate Spanish program move under school board review
Bilingual classes were to be moved to Eugene Coste School, but school board plans to gather more feedback
The Calgary Board of Education (CBE) says it will consider other alternatives for students in the Spanish program at Westgate School.
The program was going to be moved to Eugene Coste School, which is 15 kilometres farther south in Haysboro, but parents submitted an appeal.
They argued the school was too far away, and today the board said it will now take a look at other options.
The CBE says there will be another open house for parents to provide feedback, but the time and date of that meeting has not yet been scheduled.
"If they would have known Eugene Coste was the location that would be considered, that would have influenced the way they would have responded to other scenarios that were put forward," said Calgary Board of Education area director Calvin Davies.
Parents say it is a move in the right direction.
"I think the whole process has been handled very poorly by the CBE," said Carolyn Chin. "The timing of it was very poor and it created a lot of hard feelings and frustration on the parts of parents who are affected."
Before the appeal was granted, some parents had decided to try to find a new school but were struggling with the options available.
Chin had been looking for an alternative because it would be such a long bus ride for her children.
"There aren't a lot of options right now. In fact there are no options for our family," Chin said.
"My daughter cried. She doesn't know where she's going. She just wants answers.”
Enrolment at her children's designated school is capped, but they are on a wait list there.
"It's just really unfortunate. There's no guarantee as to where they can go," she said.
Chin also looked into the overflow school for her area, which uses a lottery.
The board says there is a space crunch in that part of the city and students who choose not to continue at the Spanish bilingual program will not get any special treatment.