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Ontario Construction News staff writer
The province has given the Near North District School Board approval to tender a new replacement school for the former W. J. Fricker Senior Public School that closed last June.
The new North Bay school will include new childcare rooms and an EarlyON Child and Family Centre. This project is part of the province’s capital investment program to support students with better learning spaces.
“The construction of this new school is great news for our community,” said MPP Vic Fedeli, MPP for Nipissing. “This investment will provide a quality learning environment and new opportunities for the children of North Bay.”
A new Near North District school will be built on the existing site and consolidate with ET Carmichael Public School and EW Norman Public School. North Bay-based Mitchell Jensen Architects Incorporated was selected to design the facility.
The school will include 308 student spaces from Junior Kindergarten to Grade 6 and 73 new licensed childcare spaces with four new childcare rooms and an EarlyON Child and Family Centre.
“This is an important approval for our new Fricker school which will consolidate three schools and enhance elementary education in this section of North Bay. This school will ensure that more students in the city will experience the modern features of a contemporary elementary school,” said Jay Aspin, board chair.
“We look forward to receiving bids and working with contractors and architects to get this project underway, in the best interest of our staff, families and most importantly, our students,” said Craig Myles, Director of Education of Near North District School Board.
Highlights of the new school construction include:
- 308 student spaces for students from Junior Kindergarten to Grade 6
- 73 new licensed childcare spaces.
- Four new childcare rooms.
- An EarlyON Child and Family Centre.
The W.J. Fricker Replacement School will be located on the existing site, 790 Norman Ave, North Bay, Ontario.
The Ontario Government is working with school board partners to invest in capital projects that advance safe and accessible learning opportunities for students, investing up to $1 billion to create up to 30,000 new childcare spaces in schools over five years.
“From modernizing our curriculum to revitalizing our classrooms and their facilities, we are investing in our students and giving them every tool to achieve their full potential,” said Education Minister Stephen Lecce. “Our construction of this new elementary school in North Bay further demonstrates our government’s historic investment in Ontario’s schools and our overall commitment to supporting our students and families.”
Over the next ten years, the Ontario government is investing about $14 billion in capital grants, including allocating $550 million in 2020-21 for new schools, additions and major renovations.