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Vandalism costs down at Coquitlam district schools
Broken windows and graffiti continue to be a problem in School District 43 but some schools fare worse than others, district vandalism statistics show.
Last year, SD43 paid out $90,000 to repair broken windows and clean up graffiti, down from $113,344 the previous year.
But despite the dip, vandalism continues to cost the district a great deal of money at a time when its finances are already stretched.
"These are things we could be looking at, especially with our budget," Coquitlam Trustee Gerri Wallis said Tuesday as the board reviewed its annual vandalism report.
Last year, for example, SD43 spent nearly $14,000 to repair vandalism at Port Coquitlam's Minnekhada middle school, roughly 15% of the district's entire expenditure on graffiti cleanup and glass breakage.
But Minnekhada, located near Hyde Creek community centre, wasn't so much of a problem over the summer. That distinction belonged to Kwayhquitlum middle school, also in PoCo, where more than $6,000 was spent to repair broken windows between July 1 and Sept. 3.
SD43 facilities manager Frank Giampa told the board that vandalism spikes at different times at different schools and is hard to pin down.
"It comes in waves," he said, noting that the district is tackling the issue on several levels, from installing special blinds to deploying security teams at high-risk schools.