As an option, can some students from Dr. Frank J. Hayden SS be redirected to Lester B. Pearson HS? Could students from Dr. Frank J. Hayden SS be held at Lester B. Pearson HS?
If English program students from the Kilbride PS catchment return to Lester B. Pearson HS, would that balance enrolment north of the QEW? (New: Feb. 2, 2017)
As of Oct 31, 2016, there are 111 English program students that reside in the Kilbride PS catchment that attend Dr. Frank J. Hayden SS. If the 111 students were added to Lester B. Pearson HS, Lester B. Pearson HS enrolments would increase to 503 students and have 138 available pupil places. However, redirecting English students from Kilbride PS catchment to Lester B. Pearson HS would not alone solve the balance of enrolment issues at schools north of the QEW as Dr. Frank J. Hayden SS will remain overutilized, while both M.M. Robinson HS and Lester B. Pearson HS will remain underutilized. The total number of empty pupil places north of the QEW/Highway 403, would remain at 542 pupil places.
Why was there no option where both Nelson HS and Lester B. Pearson HS closes?
Can other options and feedback be brought forth?
Yes. Members of the public can provide information to your school’s
parent/guardian representatives on the PARC, as well as to the Board’s PAR email address at
Education Funding and Cost Savings
How is education funded in Ontario?
A bulk of the operating funds for school boards are provided by the Ministry of Education through the Grants for Student Needs (GSN). This includes, but is not limited to, funding for classroom resources, student achievement, special education programs and services, facility operation and staffing. For more information, please see the Ministry of Education’s
2016-17 Education Funding: A Guide to the Grants for Student Needs.
budget and financial information are also publicly available through our website.
What is the estimated cost saving from implementing Option 19? (New: Feb. 21, 2017)
Consultation and Community Involvement
Will opportunity to delegate be open to any member of the public or only open to those schools that have been newly advised of their closure?
Any member of the public can to delegate to the Board. For more information, see
Delegate the Board.
Why is the public delegation night in May, after the Director’s Final Report? (Revised: Mar. 28, 2017)
Why aren’t parents of elementary students consulted?
All members of the public, including parents of elementary students, are provided the opportunity to participate in the PAR process and share their input. Please see
Community Involvement for ways to get involved.
When will the student survey be released?
The survey was released to students on November 28, 2016 and included questions regarding program, extracurricular and learning environment. Students will also be able to provide input via open text responses.
Will the results of the student survey be released to the public?
The results of the student survey, including the questions and the response rates for each school has been shared with the PARC. Given that this is part of the community consultation, the results are posted under meeting materials on the
Why does the PARC not hear the opinions of teachers and principals?
All staff in Burlington high schools will have the opportunity to provide input via a staff survey. Staff are also able to share input through the opportunities provided at
Will the Board provide a list of courses taught at each school?
Are small schools better able to support students in need of extra help?
Generally, staff at small schools tend to know each student better and may be able to proactively intervene to support a student who is in need of assistance due to the higher ratio of service staff to students. The Board provides this to maintain the core functions of the school.
This does not mean that large schools are not able to proactively respond to student learning needs. Larger schools have a lower percentage of early leavers, who are students that leave a school prior to graduation, when compared to smaller schools. Larger schools do provide the same services as smaller schools. Larger schools offer more programming choices to all students. For information, please see
Reasons for Program and Accommodation Review.
The Halton District School Board strives towards its vision that every student will explore and enhance their potential, passions, and strengths to thrive as a contributing global citizens.
Similar to ‘small schools’, can 'large schools’ also face the challenge where some courses may end up with too few students enrolled to actually offer the program?
This does occur in all schools. Student choice determines what courses run, so in any particular year, certain courses may not run if students don’t choose them. Following the course selection process by students at each school, some courses may not have sufficient student numbers to be taught. This occurs in small and large schools.
However, larger schools will have sufficient student numbers for the Board to provide more courses than smaller schools. In addition, larger schools enable the school to provide more than one class of a course. By having more classes available in a course, it is more likely that schedules can be built to accommodate students, which is not always the case in schools offering single classes of courses. Students in larger schools therefore have more opportunity to take the courses they would like without having to attend another school, take the course online, or take that course the following school year or via summer/night school. Larger schools provide more options for students who would like to take those optional courses.
Is more funding available for programming at larger schools than smaller schools?
Funding is provided to the school board on a per pupil basis. The allocation of this funding to schools is a Board decision and is generally proportional to the number of students in a school. Hence, larger schools with a greater number of students, typically receive more funding. There are however several areas in smaller schools that the Board provides additional funding/support to ensure that the same essential services are available as those in larger schools.
Why aren’t more courses and programs provided at small schools?
To offer a course or program, there must be a sufficient number of students interested. In smaller schools, the same variety of courses and programs may not be run as they do not have the critical mass of students to run as many courses. Small schools will often provide alternate methods for students to take courses, where feasible. This might include e-learning or offering a specific course in alternate years (e.g., Grade 12 Workplace mathematics). Guidance departments work with students to plan course selection over the course of their high school career.
Why can’t the Board offer the same quality of education across all schools in Burlington, regardless of size?
The Board provides high quality programming in all of its school including a range of mandatory courses across all secondary schools in Halton. However, the Board cannot provide a full range of optional courses at all schools due to the lack of interest for certain optional courses at some schools. Generally, larger schools are able to offer a wider range of optional programs due to sufficient enrolments per optional course.
Why does LBP only have 1.5 feeder schools currently? (New: Feb. 2, 2017)
Prior to the opening of Dr. Frank J. Hayden SS, Kilbride PS (Eng), Sir E. MacMillan (Eng, ExtF) and CH Norton (Eng) fed into Lester B. Pearson HS. Following the school boundary review process, which involved public consultation, the approved boundaries resulted in the redirection of Kilbride (Eng) students to the new secondary school. At the time of the boundary review, projections for 2016 indicated that the enrolments would decrease from 625 (98% OTG utilization) to 562 (88% utilization) following the redirection of Kilbride students. However, actual enrolments for 2016 is 392 (61% utilization) as a result:
- The percentage of students electing to attend another high school for grade 9 has increased, resulting in lower enrolments into grade 9;
- A decline in Late French Immersion enrolment;
- A low percentage of students attending Lester B. Pearson for a 5th year.
Why does the North Headon Forest area currently attend Florence Meares PS (K- Gr. 8) instead of C.H. Norton PS (K- Gr. 8) for English programming? (New: Mar. 10, 2017)
At this time, C.H. Norton PS cannot accommodate all of the elementary students from Headon Forest without approaching Total Capacity of the site. The C.H. Norton site can accommodate a maximum of 8 portables. Having the North Headon Forest area attend Florence Meares PS for English programming ensures portables would not be required at both C.H. Norton PS and Florence Meares PS.
How will the Board ensure that success continues for Lester B. Pearson HS students if they attend M.M. Robinson HS?
The Board’s vision is that “Every student will explore and enhance their potential, passions, and strengths to thrive as contributing global citizens.” Our
Multi-Year Plan 2016-2020 outlines our collective commitment to the success of all students in all of our schools. When students change schools, appropriate transition planning occurs to support a successful transition to the new setting.
What is the number of students in the Orchard, Alexander’s community that opt to attend Corpus Christi CSS? (New: Feb. 2, 2017)
The Board does not collect data regarding students that opt to attend a non-HDSB secondary school from a grade 8 HDSB school. Please note that the students indicated below may have elected to attend any HCDSB secondary school or any other school outside of HDSB.
John William Boich PS: For the 2016-2017 school year, 17% of the grade 8 graduating English class (10 students) from John William Boich PS attended a school outside of HDSB. All students in the grade 8 graduating class attended a HDSB secondary school.
Orchard Park PS: For the 2016-2017 school year, 12% of the grade 8 graduating English class (3 students) from Orchard Park PS attended a school outside of HDSB. All students in the grade 8 graduating class attended a HDSB secondary school.
Alexander’s PS: For the 2016-2017 school year, 37% of the grade 8 graduating English class (22 students) from Alexander’s PS attended a school outside of HDSB. 3% of the grade 8 graduating FI class (1 students) from the school attended a school outside of HDSB.
Does the number of students returning for a 5th year at Dr. Frank J. Hayden SS contribute to overcapacity at the school? (New: Mar. 3, 2017)
The number of students that return for a fifth year cannot be considered a major factor that contributes to over capacity at Dr. Frank J. Hayden SS.
Generally, how many students return to school for a 5th year? (New: Mar. 3, 2017)
Students may chose to return for a fifth year for various reasons, such as, to meet credit requirements for graduation, to take courses previously unavailable or unable to fit in a student's timetable, a change of chosen pathway requiring additional/other courses, etc. From 2013-2016, an estimated 15-27% of the Grade 12 students returned for a 5th year for various reasons. Please note that students can attend the same school or a different school for a 5th year.
To save costs, could the Board charge a tuition fee for students returning for a 5th year?
As a public school board, the board can not charge a tuition for our core educational program.
What would happen to special programming and activities at schools if they are closed?
After a school closure is announced, the next phase would be to develop a detailed transition plan (School Integration Plan). Any school closures would require the Board to examine the redirection of programs, resources and other activities to other schools. Typically these schools would be the schools receiving additional students from the closed school.
How will the Board meet the needs of students with exceptionalities in the event of a major transition?
Whenever students with special education needs change schools there is significant transition planning involved by staff who know these students best. The needs of students with exceptionalities will be discussed by the Board as part of the School Integration Process following the PAR and transition planning will occur between the schools involved as part of this process.
Are the social and psychological consequences of splitting students from their peers being considered?
Currently, numerous schools in Halton have split cohorts from grades 5 or 6 to higher grades, and grade 8 to grade 9. Examples from Burlington include grade 8 students from Tecumseh PS attending Burlington Central HS and Nelson HS and students at Frontenac PS to Nelson HS and Robert Bateman HS. Where students change schools, planning occurs to support a successful transition.
Would you consider creating regional programs to increase enrolments?
It is not felt that regional programs (or magnet programs or speciality programs) would attract enough students from outside the Board to have a significant impact on the number of empty pupil spaces in Burlington.
Can students chose which school to attend in grade 9?
The Board establishes secondary school boundaries for English and French Immersion students. If a student wishes to attend a different school, students must apply through the
Optional Attendance process. Other regional programs, such as International Baccalaureate (IB), Essential program or special education placements are accessed through program specific processes.
How many students are accepted into Dr. Frank J. Hayden SS through Optional Attendance? (New: Mar. 22, 2017)
Why are students permitted to attend a school through Optional Attendance?
The Halton District School Board encourages students to attend the school designated for families in their area.
The Board, however, provides to students who are residents in the Halton region the opportunity to apply for enrolment in a Halton school outside their regular school attendance area where there are sufficient pupil places to accommodate them. The key factor in the consideration of these applications is to ensure that there is no significant negative impact on the enrolments or internal resources of either the home or the requested school or their capacity to provide viable programs (e.g. French Immersion). For more information, see
Secondary Optional Attendance Administrative Procedure.
Would students be able to attend a school outside of the school catchment?
Students interested in attending a school out of catchment must follow the regular
Optional Attendance procedure.
What would happen to teachers and other staff when schools are closed? (New: Feb. 2, 2017)
If Trustees approve the closure of any schools, the Board would have discussions with the different unions impacted and determine the process that will be implemented to ensure alignment with collective agreements and to recognize the emotional impact on those employees impacted. It should be noted that different processes may exist for each employee group.
Furthermore, HDSB is a growing school board due to residential growth in Milton and Oakville, and we do not anticipate requiring fewer permanent staff over the long term.
What is the eligibility criteria for the Board to provide bussing for students?
Secondary students who live farther than a 3.2 km walking distance from their school are eligible for transportation. For more information, please see the
Board’s Transportation policy.
Is secondary school busing shared? (New: Mar. 1, 2017)
Secondary schools in Halton share bussing with elementary schools, as well the Halton Catholic District School Board.
Have bus driver shortages in Burlington been addressed? (New: Mar. 1, 2017)
Halton Student Transportation Services (HSTS) provides student transportation for the Halton District School Board and Halton Catholic District School Board.
Currently, there is a total of 119 school bus routes servicing Burlington schools (HDSB and HCDSB combined). At this time there are three (3) large bus routes and four (4) mini bus routes in Burlington that do not have a permanent driver. These routes are currently being serviced by supply drivers employed by the respective bus company. At this time each bus company has several drivers in training with an expected completion date being the beginning of March. Additionally, several drivers will be returning in early March from winter vacations.
In addition to the above, HSTS is reviewing various options to address the bus driver shortage over the next few months. It is anticipated that any implementation of these options would address the driver shortage prior to the commencement of the 2018/2019 school year, the year that any school closures may take effect, if approved by the Board.
What is On the Ground (OTG) capacity?
On the Ground capacity is the provincially-recognized pupil place capacity of the school building. This figure is recognized as the operating capacity of the school. This figure does not include portables or portapaks.
In determining the OTG of a school, each space within the school building is assigned a student loading. Secondary instructional space is loaded at 21 students each, and includes standard classrooms, computer labs, gyms and specialty rooms such as tech rooms. Special Education rooms, such as those used for Community Pathways program are loaded at 9 or 12 students each. Excluded are auditoriums, cafeterias, library and seminar space, which are loaded at 0.
Instructional space at elementary schools are loaded differently. Where Board facilities share space between an elementary and secondary school, OTG capacity of one school is separate and does not contribute to the OTG of the other school. For example, the OTG capacity for Aldershot Elementary is distinct from that of Aldershot HS.
Why has On the Ground (OTG) capacity changed over the years at some schools?
What is excess or shortage of pupil places?
Would portable classrooms be required at schools under each option? (New: Mar. 7, 2017)
It is difficult the exact number of portables at this time, as the number depends on the school layout, timetabling, number and availability of standard and specialty classrooms.
Please note that secondary schools can typically accommodate 10-15% more students within the permanent school building without the addition of portables due to the number of part-time students and through creative timetabling.
If either Aldershot HS or Burlington Central HS are closed, would grade 7-8 students in these shared facilities be housed in portables?
Accommodation of any elementary students housed in either the Aldershot or Burlington Central facility has not be determined at this time, and will not be determined through this PAR process.
The existing spaces for grade 7's and 8’s will remain within the designated OTG (On The Ground) portion of the elementary section of those facilities. As such, it is unlikely that those students would be placed in portables if the secondary portion of those facilities are closed. Ultimately, once a decision has been made by trustees, then the accommodation of elementary students may need to be reviewed by the Board. However, Board staff does not have any pre-determined plans for grades 7 and 8 students at this time.
What is being done to achieve equality between older schools in declining neighbourhoods and new construction where schools appear to have more amenities?
The Board has undertaken an initiative called “Close The Gap” to address needs of older schools. Please contact
Facility Services if you have further questions regarding initiatives.
Which secondary school facilities in Burlington have air conditioning?
Dr. Frank J. Hayden SS is the only secondary school facility in Burlington that is fully air conditioned.
Lester B. Pearson HS and Robert Bateman HS are air conditioned with the exception of their technical/vocational rooms. 75% of M.M. Robinson HS is air conditioned with the exception of their technical/vocational rooms.
What is Facility Condition Index (FCI) and how are projected renewal needs determined? (New: Feb. 2, 2017)
Facility Condition Index (FCI) is a standard benchmark that is used to compare the condition of a buildings. It compares a facility’s total five year renewal needs to the cost of rebuilding the same building. The assessment does not measure or assess the building against the current building code. FCI compares the building to itself, from when it was new to now. It does not compare one building vs. another. It does not identify need to bring the building up to current standards.
Schools assessed are assessed on a 5 year rotation. The facilities involved in this PAR have been assessed in 2011 or 2013, with the exception of Dr. Frank J. Hayden SS, which has not been assessed (See notes in item 1.6.5 - Projected facility renewal needs). The Ministry has just completed one assessment cycle and has begun a new five-year assessment cycle in 2016. Based on the timing of individual Ministry assessments, not all schools involved in the PAR will be assessed in the current school year and data for schools currently being assessed may not be available prior to the completion of the PAR. The assessments are a snapshot in time, as of the date of inspection.
The assessments are conducted by Ministry of Education independent, third-party facility inspectors. Each assessment team is comprised of two engineers — one with expertise in building design and construction, and the other with expertise in building systems (e.g., mechanical and electrical). A HDSB staff member accompanies the assessment team throughout a school assessment tour.
The assessments identify renewal events (repair or replacement) that should be completed in a five-year window, and includes:
- site features,
- building structure,
- building envelope (exterior walls and roofs),
- interior components or finishes,
- fire and life safety, and
- electrical systems.
The assessments do not include:
- environmental or accessibility audits,
- solar photovoltaic panels and other solar energy collectors,
- the appropriateness of room space,
- small sheds,
- play equipment/structures,
- score boards,
- goal posts,
- flag poles, and
- asbestos abatement is also out of scope.
Could you please confirm and clarify the names of the two companies that prepared the renewal costs as outlined at the February 16, 2017 PARC meeting? (New: Feb. 22, 2017)
If Dr. Frank J. Hayden SS is overcapacity, could it impact access for emergency services at the school and the community centre? (New: Feb. 2, 2017)
Student health and safety is always a top priority for the Board. As with other schools in Halton, Dr. Frank J. Hayden SS has approved processes to handle emergency situations. During school emergency evacuation practice drills, the principal at Dr. Frank J. Hayden SS indicated that no major concerns were identified by the police and fire departments with their ability to enter/exit the school building/property.
Why did the Board build the new Dr. Frank Hayden Secondary School, given the potential impact on existing secondary schools in Burlington?
As part of the planning for the new Alton and Orchard Communities in the mid 1990’s, the Board had always envisioned a secondary school to accommodate students generated from these new areas. Given the residential growth of those two communities and the number of new HDSB elementary schools that were built, enrolment projections indicated that there was a sufficient number of students that could justify a new school to service North-East Burlington. As a result, a business case was prepared and submitted to the Ministry of Education for funding a new secondary school, given the existing and projected need to accommodate secondary students from the area.
What is the cost to construct a new secondary school?
On October 28, 2016, the Ministry of Education approved funding for a new 1200-pupil place secondary school in Milton. Total funding provided by the Ministry is $32,555,603 for the construction of the new facility. This excludes site acquisition and site prep costs.
Is the Board reviewing the closing of schools in Burlington, in order to obtain Ministry of Education funding to build new schools in Milton and Oakville growth areas?
No. The Ministry of Education Capital Priorities Funding model, requires school Boards to submit business cases regarding the construction of new schools and additions. The business cases require the school boards to look at specific review areas/communities, such as Milton and North Oakville, in order to determine need. Under enrolled areas, such as Burlington, are not included in the analysis.
How many excess pupil places does the Board need to eliminate in order to have the opportunity to apply for funding to rebuild and upgrade older Burlington Secondary School facilities? (New: Mar. 7, 2017)
Under the Ministry’s 2016 School Consolidation Capital (SCC) funding program, eligible projects include those where two or more schools are consolidated into one new facility, additions and/or renovations to existing schools to accommodate enrolment from closed schools and right-sizing existing schools for other uses including Community Hubs. The Board can also apply for funding through the Ministry’s Capital Priorities program.
The Ministry does not outline the number of excess pupil places that need to be eliminated in order request funding. Requests for funding for capital projects are evaluated by the Ministry of Education on a case-by-case basis, and there is no guarantee of funding approval.
Has the Board considered opening a new school between the Downtown Core and current Aldershot facility?
No. To construct any new school or additions to existing facilities, the Board must submit a business case to the Ministry of Education to request funding. The Ministry would review the business case to determine whether an immediate need is present to proceed with funding of such a project. Given the number of empty pupil places currently available south of the QEW/Highway 403, the Ministry would require that the Board undertake a PAR.
How long does it take to build an addition to a building? (New: Mar. 7, 2017)
This is dependent on a number of factors. Having sufficient funds to undertake the additions and/or renovations, which could potentially come from Ministry of Education funding, or through Proceeds of Disposition (sale of property). Once funding is in place, time is required to undertake the appropriate design, and for building permit and site plan permits approvals from the City of Burlington. It should be noted that, any plans would be initiated as soon as decision is made by the Board, with respect to any school closures.
Will the PARC be provided with financial costs for school upgrades to meet AODA compliance by 2025? (Revised: Mar. 7, 2017)
Will the Board promise not to sell any property?
The Board reviews its needs and space requirements regularly. If there are properties not in use and not required for the Board’s purposes in the long term, then the Board will decide to declare a property as surplus to its needs. Surplus properties will be disposed according to
Ontario Regulation 444/98 Disposition of Surplus Real Property. Please see question below regarding process for surplus property disposition for a brief overview of the process.
Will closed schools be sold to condo or other developers?
The Halton District School Board is not closing schools with the intention to sell the property for condos or other developers. The purpose of this PAR is to address the challenges faced by secondary schools due to low enrolments and to reorganize schools in order to provide better program offerings and learning opportunities for all students.
In the spirit of keeping public properties in the public realm, all school boards are required to follow the legislative process stated in
Ontario Regulation 444/98 Disposition of Surplus Real Property. The Halton District School Board is required to first circulate a proposal to sell, lease or otherwise dispose of real property to a number public agencies, including:
- Co-terminus school boards;
- Post-secondary institutions;
- Province of Ontario; and,
- Government of Canada.
If no public agencies express interest in the property, only then can the Board proceed to selling property to private organizations. The Board of Trustees must approve the initiation of this process.
Will closing a school decrease our property value?
Based on our understanding and experience, there is no impact. In the current Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area real estate climate, it is questionable if school closing will impact property values.
A study was undertaken by the Toronto District School Board in 2008 titled, “Evaluating the Impact of School Closings on Residential Property Values of Existing Housing in the Vicinity”, by Murtaza Haider, dated Oct 30, 2008. The study presented an analysis of the impact of local housing prices after three schools were closed by the Toronto District School Board. The paper concluded that “the change in land-use from educational uses to institutional, or residential land-uses at the afore-mentioned schools sites (Edithvale PS, Humber Heights PS and York Mills PS) did not have an adverse impact on the price of neighbouring housing units” (page 1). This study can be applied to Burlington context as well.
Enrolment Projection Methodology
Where can I learn more about the enrolment projections?
The Board annually releases a
Long Term Accommodation Plan, which provides an in depth analysis of the future and current enrolments for each school in the Halton region.
Burlington Review Areas section of the Long Term Accommodation Plan to view only enrolment projections specific to Burlington schools. Secondary school enrolment projections are provided in pg. 73-80.
Are students from specialized programs, such as English as a Second Language (ESL), International Baccalaureate (IB) and Gifted, included in the projections?
Yes. Students from specialized programs, such as English as a Second Language (ESL), International Baccalaureate (IB) and Gifted, are included in the projections under English (ENG).
Is development considered in the enrolment projections?
Yes. As a part of the Planning Act, the Halton District School Board is circulated on all residential development plans by municipalities. The type and number of units is included within the information shared by the municipality. The Planning department utilizes the information on units and phasing in developing enrolment projections.
The HDSB Planning Department is in regular communication with municipalities and developers to track development and unit occupancy.
What number of new development units are included in the Board’s enrolment projections? (New: Feb. 2, 2017)
Are projections based on census data?
No. Projections are based on a various of sources of data, including but not limited to:
- Current and historic enrolment data
- Circulated development plans
- Regional birth data
Projection methodology can be found on in the methodology section of the
Long Term Accommodation Plan.
How is the Board more confident with the enrolment projections for Dr. Frank J. Hayden SS now?
Initial projections for Dr. Frank J. Hayden SS were based on data available before the new school was built. At that time, the Board did not have established historical trends or additional data to support deviations from projections.
Following the opening of a new school and with each successive year, historic trends can be established and additional information regarding the new community become available. This includes students from other school boards or private schools now opting to attend the new HDSB school, as well as changes in the percentage of students from HDSB feeder schools who now prefer to stay within HDSB for secondary school, or attend the new school rather than attend a different HDSB secondary school through Optional Attendance.
From the 2011-2015 LTAPs, the Board’s projections for Burlington Central HS have been revised. What is causing this upward revision? Is the catchment area attracting more students than projected in the Board’s model? (New: Feb. 2, 2017)
Robert Bateman HS’s enrolment has been revised downward from 2011 to 2015 LTAPs. What is causing this huge downward revision? What is happening in this catchment area for such a dramatic decrease to occur and why didn’t the Board include this in projections? (New: Feb. 2, 2017)
Have the approved changes to FI program delivery from grade 1 FI entry at 50% intensity to grade 2 FI entry at 100% intensity been incorporated in the enrolment projections? (Revised: Mar. 2, 2017)
Alton West 510-03/03 School Boundary Review
As a part of the school boundary review for the new Alton West subdivision, why does the recommendation redirect students from the area to M.M. Robinson HS? (New: Feb. 2, 2017)
Where do I find more information about the Alton West 510-03/03 Subdivision Boundary Review? (New: Feb. 2, 2017)
Future Growth and Intensification
Our community is in transition, seniors are moving to condos and young families are moving into the community. Will this have an impact on enrolment projections for secondary schools in Burlington?
Yes, communities are in transition. These transitions enable most communities to maintain their current enrolments. We account for these changes in our projections by adding growth in key grades and reviewing all grades for growth patterns.
Enrolment in Halton is growing, so why are schools recommended for closure?
Halton Region comprises of four municipalities, Milton, Oakville, Halton Hills and Burlington. Enrolment growth is largely occurring in Milton and Oakville.
In Burlington, elementary enrolments are projected to decline over the next 10 years by by 808 students, with annual growth in the range of 0% to -2%. Secondary enrolments are projected to remain relatively flat over the next 10 years with an enrolment in the range of 5380 to 5355 and an annual growth range of -2% to 2% annually. However, most of the secondary growth is attributed to one school, which is Dr. Frank J. Hayden SS. Please see the
2015-2016 Long Term Accommodation Plan for projection details.
The population in Burlington is growing, so why are schools recommended for closure?
Population in the City of Burlington is growing, however growth is not evenly spread throughout the city. Most of the residential growth is occurring in Northeast Burlington, which is resulting in the growth of the secondary student population in the Dr. Frank J. Hayden SS school catchment only. The other communities in Burlington are declining in population, which is resulting in stable or declining enrolments at other schools.
How will Burlington’s popularity, especially as a place to raise children, impact enrolment population and enrolment projections? (New: Feb. 2, 2017)
Why is there such a big discrepancy between what the Board highlights in the LTAP, a total of 278 units mentioned, and what is currently being planned by the City of Burlington - over 1,864 units and a potential of an additional 2000 units in a 5 – 10 year timeframe? (New: Feb. 2, 2017)
Why is the Director’s Preliminary Report mute with respect to the primary intensification areas where the majority of the city’s forecasted population growth will take place between now and 2031?
The Board has included all circulated development applications in Burlington, as part of the enrolment projections. Any additional applications will be included in future projections. However, it has been our experience where intensification has occurred (i.e. Aldershot Community), there has been no appreciable increase in enrolments within the area, given that high density development does not generate a significant number of students. Currently, our yields indicate for every 1000 high density units an average of 14 secondary students are generated for the HDSB.
Why does the Director’s Preliminary Report not mention the fact that Burlington Central High School is located in a primary intensification area?
The report does not mention any areas of intensification within Burlington. The Official Plan Review has just started and has not yet been approved by the City of Burlington.
How would increased development in the Downtown Core impact the enrolment projections for Burlington Central HS? (New: Feb. 2, 2017)
The City of Burlington is currently undergoing an Official Plan Review process, which will likely propose intensification within the existing urban area. How will students from these new developments be accommodated if schools are closed?
Although the City of Burlington is going through an Official Plan review process, which will likely result in changes and direction with respect to intensification, nothing has yet been approved by the City. Although the City is moving forward with approvals this year, this does not preclude the potential for objections from the broader community and ensuing appeals, especially from developers. The timeframe for this plan is over the next 15 years.
Moreover, the issue at hand is that there are no tangible numbers of residential units that are being proposed, just population numbers. These population numbers do not provide Board Planning Staff with any benefit in terms of enrolment projections moving forward. However, we can assume that the intensification will be of the higher density type of residential unit and typically the Board does not see a significant number of secondary students generated from these developments.
For example, the following identifies the HDSB experience of high density infill/intensification in one community in Burlington, which is Aldershot:
- Since 2006, there have been approximately 1062 high density units built in the community. This does not include retirement and senior’s care developments that have been built in the area. Of the 1062 high density residential units built, the HDSB has only seen 14 secondary students generated from these developments as of 2016.
The intensification in other cities in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) has resulted in the same low secondary student yields for other school boards:
- Downtown Mississauga, has approximately 14,781 high density residential units. From these units, the Peel District School Board has seen approximately 264 secondary students generated.
- In Toronto, more specifically the Waterfront/Liberty Village area, approximately 21,172 medium and high density units have been built. From these units, only 156 secondary students have been generated for the Toronto District School Board.
The conclusion can be made that notwithstanding the proposed intensification moving forward with the City of Burlington proposed Official Plan Review, the Planning Department does not anticipate any significant generation of secondary students moving forward.
Another fact that Planning Staff would like to point out that moving forward, if using a secondary pupil yield of 27 students per 1000 residential units (assuming 25% medium density and 75% high density), that in order to fill the current 1800 empty pupil places, approximately 66,666 residential units will have to be built in Burlington.
City of Burlington is looking to promote growth through intensification. Would the Board not need the capacity to house these students?
The intensification identified will typically be in the form of high density development, which do not generate very many secondary students. The Board will need to consider that there is some built capacity in the existing schools that may remain open to accommodate any of this growth.
Why is it that the Board is looking at closing secondary schools, when the Halton Catholic District School Board is seeing growth in south Burlington?
The Halton Catholic District School Board (HCDSB) is not experiencing enrolment growth in south Burlington. In fact enrolments in their secondary schools are projected to decline over the next 10 years. Moreover, an information report to the HCDSB Board of Trustees dated September 6, 2016, staff indicated that they are anticipating a Pupil Accommodation Review process for HCDSB Burlington Secondary Schools by the 2017/2018 school year.
Glossary of Planning Terms