Brennan Creek School opened in 1958, and now, 54 years later it may be closed.
It is always upsetting to see a community school close its doors. However, with enrollment expected to decline to a mere three students for the 2013-2014 school year, the Board of Education for School District No. 73 is considering doing just that.
To close now will result in the three students currently in the community being transported to Barriere Elementary via an existing bus route; a long and tedious trip for students, especially in the winter months.
Back in 2009, the School District received a report that said closing the school would result in a savings of approximately $3,500. The recommendation made at that time was to keep the school open, as the savings by closing would be minimal.
Today the School District feels the savings outweigh the distance and travel time that students will be riding the school bus to Barriere.
This is of course is a concern for those raising families in Brennan Creek, and for those who may be planning to do so in the future.
There is also much discussion on what to do with the school property if it is closed. The holding includes acreage directly adjacent to Adams Lake, and of course the school building itself.
Is this an opportunity for the School District to market the property for good market value due to its desirable location, or will the School District retain the property as they have done with many other schools that have closed?
There is also some discussion circulating that the property could be leased to the Thompson Okanagan Regional District for a Regional Park. TNRD Area ‘O’ alternate director Mike Fennell says he is very much in favour of this. Which will retain the accessibility of the spot for Brennan Creek residents to enjoy the beach and lake side, while possibly utilizing the school as a community centre.
There seems to be a number of options and discussions circulating about the future of this small one room school that sits on the banks of Adams Lake, and as a result, SD 73 will be holding a public meeting there on Nov. 5.
The public meeting will be to discuss the possible closure of Brennan Creek Elementary, and will start at 7 p.m., at the school, 6200 Adams West FSR.
For those who would like the opportunity to voice their concerns, it is suggested you contact Elaine Burns at 250-374-0679 at least one week prior to the meeting date to schedule your presentation. A written copy of the presentation should be provided in advance of the meeting. Copies can be mailed to 1383 9th Ave., Kamloops, B.C., V2C 3X7, attention: Board of Education; or they can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Before we see this unique piece of area history disappear, I would encourage the public to make sure you are there.