Brentwood Park Elementary School is located in North Burnaby and has a population of approximately 550 students enrolled in Kindergarten through Grade 7, organized into 23 classes or divisions. It is a relatively stable yet growing community due to the great deal of development in the Brentwood area. Students leaving Brentwood Park after grade 7 typically live in the catchment area to attend Alpha Secondary School.
A wide variety of cultures and ethnic backgrounds are represented in our school community, with approximately 50% of our students as English Language Learners (ELL). We offer support to our students of Indigenous ancestry, approximately 2% of our population, as well as provide learning opportunities to the staff and students of Brentwood Park around Indigenous history, heritage and culture as part of our commitment to Truth and Reconciliation. We are also committed to continually learning and growing in areas of anti-racism and strive to embrace diversity and equity for all.
Approximately 5% of our student population are identified as having ‘low incidence’ special needs including: autism, moderate to profound intellectual disability, physical dependency and/or chronic health impairment, or intensive behaviour and/or serious mental health challenges. Another 5% of our population are identified as having ‘high incidence’ special needs including: learning disabilities, mild intellectual disabilities, and moderate behaviour and/or mental health. There are numerous non-enrolling teachers (4.8 full time equivalent) and eighteen Educational Assistants (EAs) who support students with special needs, students who require learning assistance in the classroom, and students who are learning the English language.
Students with special needs are integrated into classrooms of age-appropriate peers with the support of LSS staff and EAs. We have a wheelchair accessible playground which was made possible by the fundraising efforts of our Parent Advisory Council (PAC). We also have a part-time counsellor and two part-time teacher – librarians supporting the students at Brentwood Park.
During the pandemic, many extra activities have been paused for health and safety reasons. In non-pandemic times, our school offers a full range of curricular and extra-curricular programs thanks to a dedicated group of staff and parent volunteers who add richness to the school culture. Students participate on school athletic teams, show their talents in musical, artistic, and dramatic presentations, succeed in local and national math and writing contests, and celebrate student learning during regular community gatherings. Students have several opportunities to challenge themselves, assume leadership roles within the school, and contribute to the wider community. We are thankful to be slowly adding back some of these activities during the
2021-22 school year.