Westside School Capacity

After careful consideration, Lethbridge School District No. 51 has determined there will not be any boundary changes for the 2019/2020 school year.

However, when examining the growing student numbers on the westside of the city, boundary changes will be required at some time in the future.

From a high school perspective, Chinook High School is currently at 89 per cent capacity, while Dr. Probe Elementary School is at 99 per cent and Coalbanks Elementary is currently at 91 per cent. The District’s other westside elementary schools, École Nicholas Sheran and Mike Mountain Horse, sit at 86 and 82 per cent capacity, respectively.

According to estimates, the westside of Lethbridge could gain anywhere from 800-1,000 students over the next 10 years. As per The City of Lethbridge census, west Lethbridge was the fastest-growing area of the city in 2018, with a 2.24 per cent growth rate.

Lethbridge School District No. 51 continues to stress the need for a new elementary school in west Lethbridge. City of Lethbridge Mayor Chris Spearman has submitted a letter of support for the school, delivered to both the Minister of Education David Eggen and the Minister of Infrastructure Sandra Jansen.

In a letter to Spearman, Minister Eggen has stated the request is being carefully reviewed and considered during the development of Alberta Education’s capital plan submission for Budget 2019, along with the capital requests of other school jurisdictions across the province.

The process of building a new elementary school on the westside does require a number of steps. It begins with The City of Lethbridge providing a school site.

The province requires that the site includes the necessary services, such as roads, water, sewer services and electricity. It may take 6-12 months to plan and design a new school, and if a serviced site is available and government funding has been secured, another 18-24 months to construct the school.

For the 2019/2010 school year, the District has secured three more portable classrooms, two of which will be utilized at Dr. Probe, with the third at Coalbanks.

Frequently Asked Questions

South Lethbridge has been experiencing growth and schools in south Lethbridge were also experiencing capacity pressures. With new development in Fairmont, Sixmile Coulee and now Southbrook, a new school in south Lethbridge is very much required.

Contact your elected provincial representative, Lethbridge-West MLA Shannon Phillips, at lethbridge.west@assembly.ab.caor 403-329-4644.

Yes, but to only a limited extent. We have almost reached capacity for future modulars. Mike Mountain Horse, for example, already has 21 modulars on site, many of which are reaching the end of their lifespan. Coalbanks only has room for seven more modular, based on the restrictions of the school site.

Southside schools are between 75 per cent to 95 per cent capacity. Lakeview School is at 87 per cent and is the catchment area for all the new growth that will be alleviated by the new southeast elementary School. North Lethbridge Elementary Schools capacity range from 56 per cent to 94 per cent capacity. Galbraith is at 94 per cent Capacity and is our oldest school. It is the District’s first priority for a modernization.

To relieve pressure from Mike Mountain Horse School. Before Coalbanks Elementary School was opened, Mike Mountain Horse was over 100 per cent capacity.

When a school reaches over 90 per cent capacity, class size challenges may become a concern due to space, common spaces, spaces to deliver options classes and learning commons (libraries) may need to be converted into classrooms space, thus losing their original functionality and intention.