Talking Transit in the Classroom

Students at Fairbank Public School can see the future of transit outside their classroom windows every day. With construction of the Eglinton Crosstown LRT happening now, they’ve been learning about what’s to come and they love it.

“Being able to access different parts of the city can enhance those experiential learning opportunities for the kids,” teacher Helen Simopoulos said. “In terms of the school itself, I think with condo development and transit coming in, our population will grow.”

Ms. Simopolous’ grade 6/7 split class have been learning about the benefits of building transit in the city and all of the factors that influence transit planning. Kids from the class discuss why transit expansion projects like the Eglinton Crosstown LRT are so important to them and how it relates to their everyday life.

During a recent visit from the Metrolinx Community Relations team, one of the students spoke about “how it will impact the community in a very big way because of how convenient it’s going to be and how fast we can travel around without traffic.”

As part of a new partnership with the Toronto District School Board, the “Transit in your Community” program is giving elementary, middle and high school students the opportunity to hear first-hand from transit experts. Metrolinx staff led classroom talks and encouraged young people to look at the city with a new perspective.

Students discuss real-world examples in their neighbourhood, what it takes to build and operate a future transit line along with possible career options in the field. “I’m excited because I can go to places faster,” another student said. A classmate said she’s excited about how the area is going to look once the project is complete and thinks more visitors will come to the Fairbank community.

Fairbank P.S. is just one of many schools that have been studying the Eglinton Crosstown LRT project. Other school classes have requested, through the program, that transit and construction professionals come by to speak as well.

All have plenty of questions and a considerable amount of enthusiasm, knowing they will be the ones benefitting just a few years down the road.