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For Immediate Release

Sept. 2, 2010

Ministry of Education





RICHMOND – With work underway across the Province to prepare for the introduction of full-day kindergarten, Education Minister Margaret MacDiarmid and Richmond East MLA Linda Reid were joined by district officials, parents and children in Richmond today to celebrate the start of design and construction of four new classrooms at École Henry Anderson Elementary.


The benefits of a full-day kindergarten program and enhanced early learning include improved academic performance in later years and improved graduation rates for B.C. students,” said MacDiarmid. “This program supports children and families in Richmond and will have far reaching benefits for the community.”


Design work for the expansion at École Henry Anderson Elementary is now underway, with construction of the new classrooms expected to begin January 2011 and to be completed in time for the 2011-12 school year. This project, along with new modular buildings planned for seven additional schools in Richmond, will create 14 new classrooms in the school district for full-day kindergarten.


The start of design and construction for this $1.7-million addition lays the physical groundwork for full-day kindergarten here in Richmond,” said Reid. “But the truly innovative and inspiring work will begin in the fall of 2011 when teachers use this space to facilitate play-based learning for our youngest citizens.”


A $144.5-million, full-day kindergarten capital investment first announced in June is being provided in addition to B.C.’s three-year, $280-million commitment to implement full-day kindergarten for approximately 40,000 students expected by 2011.


Full-day kindergarten will be available for up to 50 per cent of kindergarten students in 2010 and for every five-year-old starting school in 2011. School districts are responsible for deciding which schools will offer full-day kindergarten this year.


“This significant investment in early-learning for our district will lead to greater success throughout our children’s school life,” said Richmond board of education chair Linda McPhail. “As educators, we know that quality early childhood programs have a huge impact on predicting a child’s future success.”


B.C.’s new modular classrooms will be designed as colourful, warm, and naturally lit spaces to enhance the teaching and learning environment. Approximately 50 per cent of the exterior walls will be finished with wood and 50 per cent of the interior wall and ceiling surfaces will have a visible wood finish to showcase the use of wood and meet the commitment of British Columbia’s Wood First Act.


The new modular classrooms will be designed to meet sustainable construction standards. These classrooms will incorporate energy-efficient heating and cooling systems and will be built with high-performance building envelopes to minimize operating costs and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.


Since 2001, capital and seismic projects worth almost $72 million have been completed in the Richmond school district. During that time, the Province has spent more than $1.7 billion to complete 80 new and replacement schools, 148 additions, 26 renovation projects and 22 site acquisitions across B.C. All new and replacement schools have been constructed to meet the latest seismic standards.


By the end of 2010-11, the Province will have committed more than $3.9 billion in school capital and maintenance projects across the province. New public buildings in British Columbia are required to use wood in their construction whenever possible.




Media Contact:


Public Affairs Bureau

Ministry of Education

250 356-5963



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