Saint-La­za­re­moves for­ward with school re­zo­ning

L'Etoile - - IN OTHER WORDS -

Ha­ving a fourth English ele­men­ta­ry school in Saint-La­zare is loo­king more and more cer­tain as the town’s mu­ni­ci­pal coun­cil mo­ved ahead with the pro­cess of re­zo­ning land this week.

Saint-La­zare coun­cil­lors met last week to adopt a se­cond rea­ding of a land re­zo­ning re­so­lu­tion.

A no­tice al­lo­wing re­si­dents to re­spond will now be made pu­blic.

Un­der such a no­tice, re­si­dents in areas of town af­fec­ted by the re­zo­ning can call for a re­fe­ren­dum or a vote on the is­sue.

If that does not hap­pen, the town ex­pects to be able to of­fer at least four par­cels of land to the Les­ter B. Pear­son School Board in the next few weeks, no­ted Mayor Pierre Ka­ry.

One glitch that could slow things down ho­we­ver is a de­mand by some ci­ti­zens as­king that the English school board gua­ran­tee it will on­ly send Saint-La­zare stu­dents to Saint-La­zare schools.

The board has in­di­ca­ted that as ma­ny as 80-percent of stu­dents in Saint-La­zare’s th­ree English ele­men­ta­ry schools, that in­clude Ever­green and Fo­rest Hill Ju­nior and Se­nior, ac­tual­ly live in Saint-La­zare.

But the board says it can not gua­ran­tee all stu­dents at­ten­ding one of its buil­dings in the town will ex­clu­si­ve­ly live in SaintLa­zare.

And such a dis­tinc­tion may not sit well with pa­rents from over­crow­ded schools such as Pierre El­liott Tru­deau Ele­men­ta­ry School in Vau­dreuil-Do­rion, which is coun­ting on the new school to help its ease over­crow­ding that has las­ted for the past se­ve­ral years.

In a stop­gap mea­sure, PETES will send as ma­ny as 120 grades 5 and 6 stu­dents to West­wood Jr. High School in Saint-La­zare next year whi­le­wai­ting for re­lief in the form of the new school.

The school board has been sit­ting on $8.4mil­lion to build a 400-plus pu­pil place English ele­men­ta­ry school in the re­gion.

Fin­ding sui­table land that must be gi­ven to the board has held up the pro­cess for the past 18months.

The board needs a 25,000 square-me­ter site in or­der to build what it says will be the most en­vi­ron­men­tal­ly ad­van­ced buil­ding in Ca­na­da.

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