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Updated: 7th January 2019 05:38

Transfer gives Morinville first secular school

A Catholic school in Morinville will be transferred to the secular Sturgeon School Division giving students access to a non-religious school for the very first time.

A Catholic school in Morinville will be transferred to the secular Sturgeon School Division next month which will give students access to a non-religious school for the very first time.  

Georges P. Vanier School will be transferred from the Greater St. Albert Catholic Regional Division, which will be dissolved on July 1 along with the St. Albert Protestant School Division.

The boards will be replaced by the St. Albert Public School District and the Greater St. Albert Roman Catholic Separate School District.

The school transfer ends a long battle by parents to get a non-religious school in the town north of Edmonton. One of the parents who led the fight, Donna Hunter, was thrilled by Friday's announcement.

"Really happy," she said. "Really pleased that this long two-year battle for something that should have always been there is completed and that there is a real school and real enrolment can happen for September."

Morinville's historical origins created a situation in which all four schools in the town were run by the publicly-funded Greater St. Albert Catholic Regional School Division.

Parents who wished to have their children educated in a secular classroom had to send them to schools outside Morinville. They complained to the province and lodged a complaint with the Alberta Human Rights Commission.

Last fall, students started attending classes in three different locations in and around Morinville, and in January they moved into new modular classrooms outside Georges P. Vanier Catholic School.

The modular classrooms allowed them to share a gymnasium and a library with Vanier students.

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