02/12/2015 07:53 EST | Updated 04/14/2015 05:59 EDT

B.C. teachers' strike boosted private school enrolment

Private schools across B.C. have seen a jump in enrolment since last year's teacher's strike.

Education Minister Peter Fassbender said he isn't concerned that independent full-time student numbers have risen by 5,000, saying the private sector has always been the choice for some B.C. parents.

The strike lasted for three months, with schools closing early for the summer break, and reopening three weeks into the fall term in September last year.

Fassbender said now the strike was settled, he expected some students to return to public schools.

"I think anytime you have instability the public looks at what options may be available," he said Thursday.

"Our job now, is to work very hard together to restore confidence that might have been lost."

This year's rise is considerably higher than usual, with numbers up almost seven per cent compared to the two per cent annual average.