School Closure Process - 2021

Board to consider closure of Battle River Online School

Hello everyone.

You may hear or see information that Battle River School Division has started a formal process to officially close the Battle River Online School.

Please be reassured that BRSD will continue to offer online programming opportunities for students. This formal school closure process is legally required in order for us to combine Battle River Online School with our other alternative learning programs, including Camrose Outreach School and more. This process is a formality; it will not change the programming.

Right now, Camrose Outreach School and Battle River Online School are considered to be two schools by Alberta Education. In order to fully integrate the administration of the two into one, we must officially go through a closure process. The formal process is outlined in the Education Act. According to the Education Act Section 62 (1) – (8), the following eight points must be covered in this letter of notification.

How the closure would affect the attendance area defined for that school.

  • As it is an alternative program, Battle River Online School does not have a defined attendance area.

How the closure would affect the attendance at other schools.

  • Students of Battle River Online School have already been successfully integrated with the Camrose Outreach School. There would be no impact on attendance at any other school.

Information on the Board’s long range capital plan

  • A replacement Chester Ronning School capital project is currently underway within the City of Camrose.
  • Approval and funding for the replacement of CW Sears elementary school in Tofield, modernization of Hay Lakes School and replacement of Charlie Killam School in Camrose are all part of the BRSD capital plan submission that was made to Alberta Infrastructure.
  • None of these long range capital plans would be impacted by closing Battle River Online School.

The number of students who would need to be relocated as a result of the closure.

  • Students of the Battle River Online School do not attend classes in person. Their online programming has already been successfully integrated with the Camrose Outreach School. There would be no students relocated.

The need for and extent of busing.

  • There is no busing required.

Program implications for other schools and for the students when they are attending those schools.

  • Online programming will continue to be accessible to all students of Battle River School Division.

The educational and financial impact of closing the school, including the effect on operational costs and capital implications.

  • There would be no educational impact, as online programming will continue to be available.
  • The purpose of the ‘school closure’ is to enable administration of the online programming to be fully consolidated with the administration of Camrose Outreach School. This will provide financial efficiencies without impacting programming.
  • There are no capital implications.

The educational and financial impact if the school were to remain open.

  • There would be no educational impact, as Battle River Online School would continue to be provided using the current service model.
  • Keeping the school open would require the school division to continue to allocate administration time.

The Battle River School Division Board of Trustees will hold a public meeting to review the information contained in this letter on Wednesday, March 3, 2021 at 12 NOON. The meeting will take place virtually and be livestreamed. A meeting link will be available on the BRSD website on Tuesday, March 2. We will accept written feedback and comments by email, addressed to kbelich@brsd.ab.ca until the end of the day on Wednesday, March 24.

The Board will vote on the motion to close Battle River Online School at their regular meeting on Thursday, March 25.

Sincerely,

Karen Belich, Chair

BRSD Board of Trustees