School of Opportunity status rejected in Morse, granted in Chaplin
Chaplin School has become the first school in the province to be granted School of Opportunity status, but a similar application by Morse School was rejected in part because of the condition of the school.
“Allowing students to continue beyond the end of this school year may present a concern for their health and safety,” Deputy Premier and Education Minister Ken Krawetz stated in a press release sent out earlier this afternoon. Krawetz visited the school and made his decision on the school's future after reviewing architectural reports on the facility. Chaplin School, which operates in the Prairie South School Division, was granted status as Saskatchewan's first School of Opportunity and will operate as a Kindergarten to Grade Eight school. The School of Opportunity designation was created last year to ensure that the potential for future economic growth is considered before changes are made to a school.
“Chaplin has the potential for economic growth based on its strategic positioning and the plans of its current industries,” Krawetz said on Thursday. “Based on a thorough review of the application, I approve Chaplin School as a Kindergarten to Grade Eight School of Opportunity, which will give Chaplin a chance to take advantage of these economic opportunities.”
Krawetz noted two of Chaplin's main economic growth opportunities surround the continued growth in the organic food industry to support the key anchor enterprise of Chaplin Grain; along with the prospects for expansion of Saskatchewan Minerals and its related new product development of sodium bicarbonate to assist with the growth and demand for clean coal technologies.
A stipulation under the School of Opportunity guidelines now require that a minimum enrolment of 51 students must be realized in three years for a kindergarten to grade eight school to remain open.
The Grade 9 to 12 students from Chaplin School will continue their high school education at either Central Butte, Gravelbourg or Mortlach.