Nova Scotia

Park West students may move after boundary review

A boundary review that could see older students moved from a P-9 school in Halifax is causing some controversy.

Older students at the largely immigrant Park West school may be moved to Clayton Park Junior High

There are 800 students from primary to Grade 9 attending Park West. (CBC)

A boundary review that could see junior high students moved from a P-9 school in Halifax is causing controversy.

Halifax's Park West has 800 students from primary to Grade 9 and overcrowding concerns have prompted the school board to start a boundary review. 

The committee doing the review says it's considering moving the older students to Clayton Park Junior High.

But Janet Lee, part of the Park West school council, said school board members won't meet with parents.

All members of the public will get a chance to speak to the board for five minutes at a later public event. 

“The whole process itself of five minutes before the school board member to discuss an issue that affects several thousands of children, not just our school, is not correct.” said Lee.

Lee says the process does not consider how moving older students could affect the younger siblings of mostly immigrant families.

“Clayton Park West and Park West school is in fact a huge draw for new immigrants to Halifax,” said Lee. “For many families they look to their older children to walk the younger siblings to school and back and forth.”

The school band alone at Park West has students from over 50 countries.

Gin Yee chairs the Halifax Regional School Board. He said the regular process of consultation will work. 

“When we do receive the report, we have our own public presentation process. That’s when we engage with the public,” he said.

At this point, the schools are just looking at classroom re-allocations. The public hearing is expected to take place this spring.