By Tim Kalinowski on March 21, 2017.
The provincial government announced on Tuesday that Medicine Hat’s École les Cyprès will have a new school building built by the 2020-21 school year. For École les Cyprès, part of the Conseil scolaire FrancoSud (Southern Francophone Education Region), the announcement was a most welcome one as the school has been contending with tight spaces in its classrooms for several years now.
Principal Suzan McElroy says the school had been hoping for favourable news after the province made its budget announcements last week about new school infrastructure spending.
“We’ve been on our board’s (capital projects) list either to have renovations or a whole new structure built. We were just waiting to see what the government was going to figure out.”
Space is a major issue for the school, says McElroy.
“We’re a kindergarten to Grade 12 facility, and originally Central Park School (where we are) was built for a K-4. We’ve added on some portables, but we’re still not to the level where a normal K-12 school would offer in terms of size of gym or the amount of classrooms we need; or for even a lab for our science. So this new building is necessary to serve our school population properly.”
École les Cyprès has 85 students at all levels currently, but McElroy hopes a new, larger building will make it easier to serve even more of the Francophone families in the region.
“Our enrolment is pretty stable, but we are expecting with a new facility it will create some interest in the community for wanting to come to our school. We hope that will attract more of the Francophone population.”
McElroy says the decision has not been finalized as to where the new building will be constructed as yet.
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