Skip to main content

French Immersion Reconfiguration Q&A

In early May, the Board of Trustees and Senior Administration held a virtual meeting and five in-person meetings with the community regarding the French immersion reconfiguration plan for École Sun Valley School, École John Henderson Middle School, Bird’s Hill School, Robert Andrews Middle School, and Dr. F.W.L. Hamilton School. Attendees were provided an opportunity to ask questions related to the reconfiguration during the meetings. In the spirit of open and transparent communication with our public, below you will find responses to the questions posed.

If you submitted a question, but don’t see it listed or answered in a similar question, please email


  • Even though the review began in the fall, the five schools weren’t identified until the Senior Administration Team reviewed all 42 schools and other facilities. It was not until February that these five schools were identified as the ones whose boundaries would need to be reconfigured. At that point, plans were put in place to inform families and the community. Keep in mind, consultation can only occur when there are choices to be discussed. When the Board of Trustees recently consulted with the community regarding the 2024–25 budget, there were options to discuss. However, in the case of reconfiguration of French immersion programming north of the perimeter, there was no choice—this reconfiguration had to take place.

  • A couple of years ago, the software did show a slight increase in enrolment overall, but because it is predicated on families applying for the Child Tax Benefit, what it cannot account for is the increase in newcomer families to our division. No software can predict situations like war or famine that result in families having to leave everything behind and start over. RETSD has the highest number of newcomers out of any division in the province. We welcome all these families to our schools but cannot predict the numbers year to year. Also, just before the pandemic, the trend was that high-rise apartment blocks did not yield many students; this has also since changed in recent years, which the predictive software does not consider.

  • The boundary reconfiguration will come into effect in September 2025. The schools and their communities have been provided with 16 months’ notice, which is the longest notice that has been given for any reconfiguration in the division’s history.








  • Families impacted by the move have received a letter indicating their child(ren) will be changing schools in September 2025. Each school has larger maps for reference. If there is still confusion, families can contact the board office at 204.667.7130 or to ask for a specific address.

  • When a new development is projecting to increase enrolment, the Board makes a decision regarding the school boundaries and where those students will attend (it will not necessarily be the nearest school). The Costco development has been monitored for several years and the Board has repeatedly put in requests to the province for a new school in that area, whereas the increase in the number of newcomers was more difficult to predict.

  • The division continually monitors school enrolment and facility capacity. As we are experiencing unprecedented growth, future reconfigurations may become necessary. However, it is important to note that the changing of school boundaries is not new to the division. Recently, there have been boundary reconfigurations impacting the French immersion programming in the Transcona area, the English-Ukrainian Bilingual Program, and between Harold Hatcher School and Wayoata School, and École Neil Campbell School and École Munroe Middle School. In fact, school divisions and districts across Canada are currently dealing with overcrowding and the need to change school catchment areas rapidly and often.

  • The Board and Senior Administration will continually review division facilities to identify changes that may be required. It is not the intention to blindside families; however, until we have reached a level of certainty regarding facilities, we don’t want to alarm families unnecessarily.

image description
Back to top