Families With Children Leave Vancouver – “We bought a townhouse in Port Moody in 2006, sold it in 2011 and bought a house. We couldn’t have done that in Vancouver. Absolutely not.”

“Last month, The Sun reported preliminary results of a Vancouver school board survey that found many families are leaving Vancouver due to the high cost of housing.

The purpose of the survey was to pinpoint the cause of the declining enrolments, which is bad news for school boards because fewer students means less government funding and difficult decisions about cuts to spending and closing schools.

In each of the past three years, the Vancouver school district has had a net loss of 600 to 700 students, the report shows. A typical elementary school in Vancouver has about 300 children.

Tracking where the students who left Vancouver schools went isn’t easy; there is no central source of this information.

Ministry of Education figures show a drop of about 10,000 students in all B.C. schools between 2008 and 2013, which could be attributed to people having smaller families, people moving out of the province or other factors.

While it may be difficult to pinpoint exactly where Vancouver’s students are going, at least some of them are heading to the eastern suburbs.

Catherine Cowan and husband Trevor are among those families, moving to Heritage Mountain in Port Moody from Burnaby in 2006, primarily because of the lower cost of housing but also for the town’s livability, good schools and community feel. Before moving to Burnaby, they lived in Vancouver.

“We bought a townhouse (in Port Moody) in 2006, sold it in 2011 and bought a house. We couldn’t have done that in Vancouver. Absolutely not.”

– from ‘Go East: Families leave Vancouver for suburbs Surrey, Coquitlam, Langley school enrolments rise while more expensive areas see decline, Tracy Sherlock and Brian Morton, Vancouver Sun, 4 July 2013 [hat-tip RESkeptic]

56 responses to “Families With Children Leave Vancouver – “We bought a townhouse in Port Moody in 2006, sold it in 2011 and bought a house. We couldn’t have done that in Vancouver. Absolutely not.”

  1. Same phenomenon in San Francisco and other cities. Not everyone’s an urbanist.

  2. [CBC] – Demand for Vancouver private schools outpacing spaces: Fraser Institute study says renting vacant public schools could help meet demand

    …”Since overall enrolment peaked in 1997-98, the number of students enrolled in all B.C. schools has declined 8.4 per cent, and public school enrolment has declined by 11.3 per cent, according to the study.

    However during that same period, enrolment at independent schools increased by 22.4 per cent, the study found. More than 11.5 per cent of students across the province now attend independent schools, it said.”…


    [NoteToEd: QuelleSurprise.]

  3. Pfft! Curse you Robo!

  4. Families With Children Leave Vancouver ….This is soooo 2010 news !!!- at that rate of reporting The Sun will discover that RE sucks as a investment in about 2-3 years…or maybe never will. Back in 2000-2001 Kits was a bit of family oriented hood, now is just Lululemon golddigers with small dogs and drugdealers mixed with renting young professionals that still didn’t get a corporate transfer to different city where they can afford to buy a house.

    • UBCghettodweller

      Ouch. That is exactly Kits, but you forgot the forlorn undergrads stacked six deep in basement suites.

    • Great point, Joe. It is indeed 2010 news. I was one of those warning of exactly this situation unfolding and did so 3 years back. Too obvious. Follows the classic patterns associated with housing bubbles. The PHD realtor geniuses could not figure it out though nor accept it back then and argued with me that I was mistaken. Now they all agree.

  5. What good schools? There are only a handful of good public schools and they are all in West Van, Van West, and Richmond West. Even then the quality isn’t that good because the curriculum just plain sucks and dumbed down. Seriously, ever wonder why Asian students beat local students so handily? It is simply because most Asian school systems don’t cater to the lowest dominators and make everyone happy. If you aren’t up to par then you fail, nice and simple.

    Yah yah, I know all about the creativity argument and test doesn’t test real understanding. However, aside from able to draw nice pictures and write nice sounding empty BS, I don’t see much creativity when it comes to solving actual technical real world problems. And frankly, you can be design the most creative bridge/building in the world, but at the end of the day, you still have to be able to solve math equations to make sure the thing will actually you know stand and remain standing. Simply being creative and no actual hard skills aren’t going to solve those math equations!

    Also, seriously, when 50% of the applicants fail basic cashier math test or the blackjack math test, it’s not really a lack of creative that’s the issue….

    • Hey you kids! Get off my lawn!

    • “Seriously, ever wonder why Asian students beat local students so handily”

      Do they now. That’s super.

    • “The kind of rigorous assessment made by investors will ensure that the qualified applicants have really a high level of human capital and they are going to be able to move around the economy,” the minister said.

      [G&M] – Canada attempts to lure foreigners away from Silicon Valley with start-up visa

      …”Anyone with one year of college and 75,000 Canadian dollars (about $73,000) from an approved Canadian angel investor, or $200,000 from an approved Canadian venture capitalist, can apply for the visa. Applicants need to be able to speak basic English or French. They need not prove they will create any jobs.

      Kenney said he believed that investors, rather than bureaucrats in his ministry, were more capable of vetting who would be good for his country…

      …Asked what happens if their businesses fail, he said he was confident that skilled, entrepreneurial foreigners would dust themselves off and find a job in Canada’s technology industry. “It’s a risk we’re willing to take,” he said.


      [NoteToEd: Evidently, ‘growing your own’ is so ‘yesterday’. Unless you’re into ‘horticulture’, of course.]

      • Ignorant Humans

        The only reason Asia has not created a Steve Jobs etc b/c they do not have the many decades of “democracy”, marketing, “capitalism”, and consumer driven society that Western world has enjoyed ahead of Asian countries. It’s not just intelligence that is needed.

    • Kill all baby boomers

      You’re an idiot if you think Canadian public schools are in some sort of crisis over quality. This is the classic middle class Vancouver conceit where yogaparents high on some retarded naturopathic bullshit start to think their kids are underachieving because their public school is failing them. No asshole your kid sucks at school because he’s got your genes. Youve no right to whine like a little bitch until you’ve had the fortune of darling with British government schools or American inner city schools.

      • Harsh! Much? Only you know.

        I think there’s a fascinating story somewhere in there.

        Please tell us, KABB.

        Just this once… Sign me, “ErstwhilePedagogue to the ScionsOfPrivilege”

      • It made me laugh, Nem. Pretty funny actually.

      • UBCghettodweller

        >No asshole your kid sucks at school because he’s got your genes.

        And poor parenting.

        As someone who grew up in neighbourhoods that were predominantly Asian, it was interesting when I upset the Asian kids at school when I got the top grades in nearly every one of my classes. “But, you’re white!” apparently isn’t racist… Not that I want to stir up racism bullshit here, but white, Canadian born kids can do well and do so without parents that guilt trip or beat their kids if they don’t get 100% on a test.

      • You can beat them into getting good marks? Good to know. Is it legal?

      • UBCghettodweller

        Farmer, I’m pretty sure it’s not legal, but I know it happened to a number of my friends. Hell, one of my friends had to lie about a bicycle injury because her father slammed a door so hard on her wrist it broke a bone while he was giving her shit for only getting in to U of T and McGill while Ivy League schools didn’t accept her applications.

        If I bring any of this up, the “no true Scotsman (Chinaman?)” and “just a few bad apples” arguments are made with a measure of racist or ethnocentrist accusations. Apparently multiculturism protects people when behaviour obviously borders on child abuse.

      • Real Estate Tsunami

        Tiger Mamas.
        We’ve got one on my boy’s baseball team.

      • Naked Official Returns

        its acceptable – baseball as an 8th inning

    • LS in Arbutus

      I agree that Asians are better educated on average as compared with North America, but having lived (and worked) in Tokyo for nearly 10 years, I can tell you they aren’t any better at solving problems. Their education system relies heavily on rote learning. This builds their skills at math or vocabulary, but it does NOT build their problem solving skills. There are pros and cons to both systems – we need more rote learning, and they need to be taught how to think on their own.

      • UBCghettodweller

        >This builds their skills at math

        I’m pretty sure anything beyond about Grade 6 Math requires more than rote memorization.

        Take any higher level high school or university math course, yes, you can use a calculator, but it won’t do you much good other than saving time and avoiding stupid mistakes when multiplying two very large complex numbers together. Algorithmic thinking and pattern recognition are the basis of Math, if you can do that, memorization other than understanding conventional number systems isn’t necessary.

      • Ignorant Humans

        UBC ghettodweller: Your limited experience and exposure is sad. Please open your eyes. I am Asian and did not get beaten by my parents. I hardly even showed them my report card. Besides, intelligence does not equate to future success, wealth, character, happiness etc. There are also many different of intelligence. How can you compare the intelligence of a creative artist to that of a physicist? We all know there are smart people in all different nationality….Didn’t somebody teach you that? Generalizing that “all” Asians is smart or should be smart is lacking in intelligence.

        ““But, you’re white!” apparently isn’t racist…” Your experience of racism is so minute to other people’s experience. Have you ever been bullied or hurt because of your nationality. Spare me.

      • I have an undergrad degree requiring many math courses and what I did was mostly rote memorization. For reals.

        Other than number theory, & algorithmic design, (which were hella fun) it was simple pattern recognition and application, and the way I learned what I needed to know was flash cards. Granted, there were some brilliant mathematicians who were creative like mad, but that’s not my skill set: I got good grades just handing them back what they were handing to me.

        If you know what you’re doing, math is creative. But I maybe that’s true of any human endeavor.

      • tedeastside

        Asia has never produced a Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg or Bill Gates.
        these men come from that race and country some Canadians consider uneducated

    • Well, my kids and niece and nephew received an outstanding education at Coquitlam public schools. All are leaders in their fields and speak positively of their experiences at Heritage Woods secondary and Port Moody Secondary where they had amazing teachers and were exposed to students from diverse backgrounds. Well grounded young adults who seem to deal with anything that comes there way.

      • Real Estate Tsunami

        ..who seem to deal with anything that comes their way.
        Wait until they get house lusty. 🙂

  6. Real Estate Tsunami
  7. but everyone is moving here right? everyone wants to live in the “Gold medal city” as some realtors refer to Vancouver,

  8. Real Estate Tsunami

    I read recently somewhere, that pupils graduating from public schools are actually outperforming private students once they attend Universities.
    Say’s the private kids were too pampered and spoon fed.

    • UBCghettodweller

      When I TAed first year undergrad classes, I saw this happen a lot. Most private school inflate averages ~5-10% compared to public schools. Not enough to be blatant, but enough to definitely give the kids an edge when applying to universities out of Grade 12. I wonder if universities keep detailed metrics of high school grades, where the kids attended school, and their first year GPA? The multiple regression analysis would be pretty telling.

    • From the Manchester Guardian:
      “Comprehensive school pupils do better at university, two new studies confirm:
      Students from state schools outperform private ones admitted with same A-level grades, according to Cardiff and Oxford Brookes research”


    • My first-hand experience suggest that this is pretty much true. I know of some notable exceptions but generally it seems that public school provides some of the necessary expereince to function more effectively at the undergrad level.

  9. LateNightAntidote… As required for…. whatever

    [NoteToEd: More hits than Ms. Ciccone’s original. Did you know that SeanP. spent more than a year in an Airstream in the middle of the desert while he was writing, “The Game”? For the modt part, it was a MadonnaCleansingThang.]

  10. More signs that the abnormal low-rate environment has turned the corner:

    “Pimco Sells Provinces After Worst Rout Since ‘94: Canada Credit

    By Cecile Gutscher – Jul 4, 2013 7:07 AM PT

    Provincial bonds, touted two months ago by Pacific Investment Management Co. as a way to offset low government bond yields, are losing favor at the world’s biggest bond-fund manager amid their biggest quarterly loss since 1994.

    The Canadian Total Return Fund reduced its holdings to 43 percent in May, from 51 percent in April, according to the latest available data on Newport Beach, California-based Pimco’s website. Debt of provinces and Canadian local governments such as Ontario and Nova Scotia remain the largest holdings in the fund overseen by Ed Devlin in London. He didn’t respond to a voice message late yesterday seeking comment.
    Enlarge image Pimco Reduces Provincials After Second-Worst Loss

    Ontario, Canada’s largest provincial borrower, extended its weighted-average term to maturity to 12.4 years from 8.1 years three years ago. Photographer: Brent Lewin/Bloomberg

    Yields have soared since the start of May on speculation the Federal Reserve may scale back asset purchases that have kept borrowing costs low worldwide. Provincial bonds fared worse than Canadian federal-government and corporate bonds, in part because issuers had extended the average maturity of the securities when rates were low, making the bonds more at risk to losses because holders demand a larger yield premium on the longest-maturity fixed-rate debt as prices fall. ”


    • Daaaa I don’t get it: aren’t higher yields a good thing for bonds? I mean, you get a higher yield. This finance stuff is con-fewwwwww-sing!

      • Pretzels...thirsty

        With all due respect, you call yourself “Housing Analyst” which has a lot to do with economics and finances, and If you have no idea of things like bonds and bond yields (which is investing 101 and also sets the fixed mortgage rates!) then maybe you should learn more before you call yourself an analyst.

      • shots fired! My duration as a satirist is, apparently, limited.

      • Meanwhile… Back in the BloggersGaol…

    • I was listening to “Making Sense of the Markets” on NW yesterday afternoon, the person they had on was highlighting some bond funds that had returned something like 8% annualized…since their inceptions in 2009. Oh my.

      • Canada and the US have lowered interest rates since the crash. Bonds benefited. The Fed has also been buying bonds through quantitative easing to bring the whole yield curve down (lower current, market rates for each time period treasury bonds are issued).

        For those who are confused by bonds and interest rates, simply keep in mind that you can usually sell bonds at any time to another party.

        Say, for example, you have a $100, 10-year bond with a 10% interest rate paid annually. 5 years later, the same (quality) 5-year bonds have a rate of 5%.

        The markets (influenced by what the Fed or BoC does) have decided that the current rate of return has gone down. One reason may be they’ve decided that inflation will erode the value of your $100 five years hence by less than what was thought when your bond was first issued, so less of a return is needed to compensate.

        You want to sell your bond, but it’s paying $10 interest per year vs. $5 for new, current bonds (both paying for each year of the next 5 years). It’s now worth more.

        A buyer will have to pay you more to get the equivalent of the same bond at the current rate of return.

        If you sell now, you get the future value of money now, and since your bond is worth more than the same, currently issued bonds, you get a capital gain.

        Or you can choose not to sell, bear the risk that the bond value goes up or down with future interest rates, and get the returns as interest income.

        (I’ve never really tried to figure out exactly why bonds go up when rates fall, and vice versa. I find going through the process like this helpful.)

      • Pretzels...thirsty

        You have a $100 bond that is paying you 10% (10 dollars) in interest. If the value of the bond drops to $80 then the relative yield increases as you are now still getting $10 dollars interest on 80 dollars.
        So, the yield on the bond can offset the decrease in the price of the bond but only to a certain extent.
        You can always sell when it starts to drop and then buy back at a lower price but higher yield.

  11. Real Estate Tsunami

    Making sense of the Markets!
    Gotta love that oxymoron.

  12. EducationallyThemedSundayMorningZen…

    [G&M] – Send your kid to TransLink Camp

    …”If you, like me, are feeling a slight pang of guilt about letting the kids sit in front of the computer playing Minecraft all summer instead of booking them into horse camp, sailing camp, Harry Potter camp or some other exotic activity, help is at hand.

    Sure, all of the spaces in all of the good camps may have been filled long ago, but there are plenty of new and uniquely Vancouver day camps out there to grow their young minds, expand their horizons and stretch their imaginations. Spaces are limited so register now!…

    TransLink Camp! Anarchist Tagger Camp! FoodCartCamp! Revisioning the Urban Landscape Camp!”…


    [NoteToEd: Alice’s embarassing little secret? He golfs.]

  13. Receding Gains

    Intelligence + luck + hard work = success.

    All in about equal measure. The beauty of Canada over other countries is that you only need two of the items on the list to still do fairly well. The rest of the world requires all three.

    Race doesn’t really matter. But if new immigrants are working their ass off to get ahead and escape their past, it helps.

  14. Real Estate Tsunami

    White guys can’t Abacus!

  15. Asians are not good at mathematics? ya ok? before you white people rant and show stupidity at the highest level some of you hopefully remember where mathematics came from.by the way IndiA invented the first university in the entire world.if you cant handle the cost of living then maybe its your iq which is lacking because your iq has allot to do with your education and therefore what kind of job and pay you will receive. bare that in mind

  16. the abacus is also a invention which India has created HAHAHAAHAAAAA!!!!

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