Capital Engagement

Greater St. Albert Catholic Schools is updating its Capital Plan. This Plan will guide decision-making about school facilities and programming, considering current and future needs. We would like to engage our community to inform this Plan. No decisions have yet been made, and we are early in planning to engage with our community on this. 

Tannis Topolnisky, with Topent Ltd.(Certified Public Participation Professional), has been retained to work collaboratively with the GSACRD leadership team to support and ensure successful engagement. 

 

Timeline

GSACRD Capital Plan Engagement

In the coming months, GSACRD will be engaging with our schools, families, and communities about our plans for investment. You can help influence these decisions by supporting the engagement process during the upcoming engagement activities, once they become available.

Capital Plan Engagement Timeline

Interviews have been conducted with Administration, School Board Trustees, and school
principals as part of informing the development of the engagement plan for this project. We are now asking principals to conduct interviews with school council representatives to understand their needs and what success looks like for them.

Background

Background 

Greater St. Albert Catholic School Division is faced with aging infrastructure, underutilized schools, and a lack of schools in new growth areas. In order to receive provincial funding to replace, modernize or build new schools, the province requires the division to demonstrate that they are using their existing facilities as efficiently as possible. This means the division needs to make some changes. GSACRD wants to engage with their school community to inform these decisions. The direction from this engagement process will not just provide guidance for today’s challenges but will provide guidance to Administration and the Board for similar challenges in the future.

Capital and Facilities Plans

Capital and Facilities Plans

Annually, the Division reviews the capital plan requirements and updates the Division’s three-year capital plan priorities. Priority categories include new school building requirements, school replacement needs, and those schools requiring modernizations. These plans are submitted to Alberta Education Capital Planning for consideration in the provincial capital planning process. Previous plans and additional historical information can be found here.

Examples of Capital Projects

What is a Capital Project?

Every school board in Alberta submits capital plan requests to the ministry of Education each year. The ministry of Education evaluates all requests submitted and prioritizes projects. This is then submitted to the Provincial Capital Planning group to consolidate requests from ALL provincial ministries. Projects are evaluated from a Provincial standing for criticality, readiness, alignment with government priorities, and available budget. Projects that are approved by Cabinet become part of that year’s Provincial Capital Plan. 

What are examples of a Capital Project?

A Capital Project is considered to be either:

  • A new school
  • Additional to an existing school
  • Modernization of an existing school
  • Replacement school
  • Solution – typically involves consolidating students from different schools where utilization rates are low and maintenance and operational costs are high.

The district needs to justify that their projects meet the following criteria used to evaluate requests, also known as project drivers: 

  • Building condition
  • Community renewal
  • Declining demographics
  • Enrolment pressures
  • Functionality and programming
  • Health and safety
  • Legal

GSACRD is considering a Solution project to address multiple schools with low utilization rates and the cost to maintain and operate these schools are high. This means several options could be considered, for example: 

  • Grade reconfiguration
  • Amalgamation
  • Boundary adjustments
  • Program changes/relocation
  • Partnerships (community/sector)
  • Others?

Questions?

Questions?

If you have any questions or concerns regarding our engagement process, please do not hesitate to contact us by emailing the GSACRD Manager of Communication, Marketing and Community Engagement: scunningham@gsacrd.ab.ca

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