On March 26, 2015, the Ministry of Education released a new Pupil Accommodation Review Guideline to help school boards make more efficient use of school space while continuing to ensure that communities have the opportunity to provide meaningful input.
The new Pupil Accommodation Review Guideline serves as a province-wide minimum standard that school boards must use to develop their own policies for pupil accommodation reviews. School boards are expected to amend their existing pupil accommodation review and facility partnerships policies to reflect the changes incorporated into the new Pupil Accommodation Review Guideline as well as the
Community Planning and Partnerships Guideline before announcing
any new pupil accommodation reviews.
Student accommodation decisions such as closing and consolidating schools are among the most important responsibilities of locally-elected school board trustees. The Ministry of Education cannot overrule or change these decisions.
Your school board will usually undertake a pupil accommodation review process – led by an Accommodation Review Committee (ARC) – when it is contemplating closing a school. This process must follow the school board's policy that governs accommodation reviews. The new Pupil Accommodation Review Guideline also outlines circumstances when a school board does not have to undertake a full accommodation review process.
The heart of this process is community consultation through representation on the ARC and through public meetings. The Ministry encourages students, parents and community members to get involved in the accommodation review process. For more information about accommodation reviews, please read the Guide to Pupil Accommodation Reviews or see our frequently asked questions.
In addition, to promote closer cooperation and planning between school boards, municipalities and community organizations, the Ministry of Education released a new Community Planning and Partnerships Guideline (PDF, 140 KB), which updates and replaces the Facility Partnerships Guideline of 2010.
Informed by feedback from the education sector and community partners, the Community Planning and Partnerships Guideline establishes a more formal consultation between school boards, municipal governments and other community partners about managing underutilized school space, as well as green space and parkland needs.