Grade Configration for IRSC and Blackfalds Enrolment Boundary Changes
Letter to Parents/Guardians and Staff : Grade Configration for IRSC and Blackfalds Enrolment Boundary Changes
Dear Parents/ Guardians and Staff:
I am writing to follow up with you about the grade configuration for the new Iron Ridge Secondary Campus scheduled to open in September of 2024 and new Blackfalds attendance boundary, which would go into effect at the same time. This decision, made by the WCPS Board of Trustees on November 17, 2022, considered all public and staff feedback received through public and online engagements and consultations in 2021-2022, recommendations from the hired consultants, as well as anticipated changes in enrolment over time in the community of Blackfalds. The Board of Trustees extends a sincere thank you to everyone who offered feedback as part of this process.
It has been well established that a ten year solution to address enrolment and capacity pressures simply does not exist in Blackfalds, given the changes in enrolment and anticipated future growth.
As a result, the reconfiguration will occur over two stages:
Stage One: September of 2024:
Grade 9 students will move from Iron Ridge Junior Campus to Iron Ridge Secondary Campus, making the high school a grades 9-12 school. Iron Ridge Elementary and Intermediate will remain as is, and Iron Ridge Junior Campus becomes a grades 7 & 8 school. In addition, planning will occur to enable the grade 7 & 8 students at Iron Ridge Junior Campus to receive CTS programming next door at the high school, beginning in September of 2024.
Stage Two, date to be determined
Depending on enrolment growth within Blackfalds and the surrounding area, the need may at some point exist to again reconfigure grades in Blackfalds schools. There are a number of variables which make the timing of these potential changes difficult to predict, and continuous monitoring will be required. Additionally, continuous communication and engagement will occur before any further configuration is made.
The expanded Blackfalds attendance boundary which was outlined in scenarios presented for public consultation last spring will be solidified effective when Iron Ridge Secondary Campus opens. That will stretch in the rural area surrounding Blackfalds to the north past Township Road 400 and west past Range Road 282 at the Bentley attendance boundary, and to the east down in the Joffre area down past Highway 11 at the Clive attendance boundary. These changes in attendance boundaries will enable a better balance between Lacombe and Blackfalds on a go-forward basis. Any families living within the new Blackfalds attendance boundary will have the option, through school of choice, to continue attending in Lacombe however cross-boundary busing will not be provided. To view the new Attendance Boundary Map CLICK HERE.
More information will be shared with families and schools as transition plans are developed.
The grade configuration of Lacombe schools are unaffected by these changes and will not change at this time.
We want to thank all parents, staff, and community members for their input throughout this boundary and grade configuration review. We look forward to the opening of Iron Ridge Secondary Campus in 2024, and commit to updating you on the development of the school along the way.
Tim De Ruyck