Spring Creek Elementary won’t open until after Christmas 

Third delay means crowded conditions at Myrtle Philip will continue

The opening of Spring Creek Elementary has been delayed for the third time.

Students will now start attending the new facility after the Christmas break instead of next week as previously scheduled.

"That decision was made late on Thursday when the people from here and the architects had a meeting with the contractor and it became apparent that we were not going to make it in on Nov. 5," said interim superintendent of schools for the Howe Sound School District Dallas Cristofoli.

The board received a letter last week from the contractor asking for a delay until near the end of November.

Faced with that and the previous two delays Cristofoli said the school board decided to choose a date they believed was realistic for everyone to reach.

It is also hoped that this delay will allow the contractor enough time to finish the gymnasium, which would not have been completed by next week anyway.

"The gymnasium is quite far behind and initially we said, ‘well, we will just live without that gymnasium for a bit,’" said Cristofoli.

"But the more we thought about installing the gym floors, which involved glues, solvents and paints, and the more we thought about the odours in that school, the more we thought it would be better done when the students are not in the building."

The weather last week didn’t help the situation, with several key contracting workers unable to make it from their Pemberton and Squamish homes due to highway washouts and flooding.

However, even before the floods there were serious concerns about whether the school could open on time raised at Myrtle Philip’s last Parent Advisory Council meeting.

"It was a safety concern in the end," said Cristofoli.

"If we could have done it safely we probably would have gone ahead."

The same sentiments were echoed by Spring Creek Parent Advisory Council chair Barb Leigh.

"I think there has been some concern that we were moving in and it really wasn’t ready," she said.

"The reality is that it is not a safe environment for the kids.

"And we are working very hard to get the playground finished and we can’t get the playground finished if they haven’t finished the site work."

The delay is disappointing, said Leigh, but not unexpected.

The school-within-a-school system is working for now in Myrtle Philip although there are concerns about the primary aged kids in the portables.

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