School board projects major growth in long term plan, expects challenges

The front of Centre Wellington District High School on an overcast day. It is a large red and beige brick building with green-tinted windows.
Upper Grand District schools (such as the pictured Centre Wellington District High School) are projecting a big uptick in students through 2051. Photo by Austin Cardinell.
Riley Gillespie-Wilson - CICW - FergusON | 06-06-2023
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Schools throughout the Upper Grand District School Board are expected to face challenges with capacity in future years as student numbers grow.

There is a plan in place to monitor this expansion, according to Ruchika Angrish, Upper Grand District School Board Manager of Planning.

The expansion is most notable in higher growth regions like Guelph, Grand Valley, and Centre Wellington. Locally, the development is expected to span more than just a few years, Angrish adds.

“These official plans, they are projecting population growth until 2051. So, Upper Grand planning staff have been involved in these reviews. We are aware of this growth.”

Projected enrollment numbers will lead to an increased need for bussing. That will be monitored as the situation develops as well, Angrish states.

“We can see from the projected enrolment increases throughout the region that there will be an increased need for bussing," Angrish says. "It will be analyzed as things change.”

Angrish says the housing market has completely shifted since pre-pandemic, and more low density housing yields more students.

She and other planning staff drafted a Long Term Accommodation Plan in late April that is expected to be finalized early in the fall.

Angrish encourages those interested to take a look at the document and provide feedback ahead of its release.

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