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May 31st, 2017 ~ Vol. 87 No. 22
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Census numbers reflected in schools
Crowsnest Pass Herald Front Page
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Horace Allen School - Coleman, Alberta
ANNA KROUPINA
Pass Herald Reporter
Results from Statistics Canada’s 2016 census released on May 3 show an increase in young people in Crowsnest Pass. The amount of children aged zero to 14 has increased by almost 100 since 2011, from 690 to 785.

Vice principal of Horace Allen School Myrna Dembicki has expressed that this is absolutely reflective at the school, which enrolls students from kindergarten to grade 3.

When Dembicki began working at the school in September 2010, there were approximately 180 students at the school.

“Each year after that,” says Dembicki, “we added one more classroom because our pop just kept growing.”
continued below ...
By the beginning of 2015, Horace Allen was up to approximately 230 students, remaining stable at this number for the beginning of 2016.

Marnie Davidson, the principal at Isabelle Sellon School (ISS), which enrolls students from grade 4 to grade 6, says that the school has seen a slight increase in the student population over the years.

In 2013, ISS had a population of 123 students. That number increased to 141 students in 2015, and to 159 in 2016. Their current student count is 150.

In conversations with parents, Dembicki says that the main reason for families moving to Crowsnest Pass is to be closer to family members already living in the area, but a second reason is lifestyle.

“I’m hearing that they want to be in the mountains and near the rivers and having this outdoor lifestyle. Some families have indicated that they’re leaving big cities because they want to be in a small town, some place safer or smaller,” she says.
continued below ...
Dembicki says that while it’s hopeful to see young families increasing in the community, the auxiliary needs have not grown along with the increase in students.

“As the population of students grows, so do the needs as far as speech language or occupational therapists in our population. With some of those services, they haven’t grown with our population and sometimes, that’s been a challenge for us,” she says.

Grade amounts have grown so much at Horace Allen that there is no space at the school to add more classes at any grade level.

“The music room, which isn't even technically a classroom, it is a meeting room, would have to move to the stage. The new classroom would have to go into the old meeting room, which isn't ideal," says Dembicki.
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May 31st, 2017 ~ Vol. 87 No. 22
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