The Ontario government is investing an additional $16.3 million for the replacement of St. Mary’s Catholic Secondary School, bringing the total investment to $36.1 million.
The increased investment, announced by Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound MPP Bill Walker, will support the creation of 1,012 student spaces as part of the Ford Government’s commitment to building state-of-the-art schools for Ontario youth.
The project is part of a province-wide investment of nearly $500 million to support new school and childcare spaces that were recently announced by Stephen Lecce, Minister of Education. The overall investment will support the creation of 37 school related projects which include 23 childcare centres. This funding will add nearly 15,700 new student spaces and 1,502 licensed childcare spaces at schools across Ontario.
“We are building new schools, building more affordable childcare spaces, and building hope and opportunity for Ontario students as they learn in more normal and safer classrooms,” said Stephen Lecce, Minister of Education. “We believe that students deserve to learn in-person in state-of-the-art facilities that are internet connected, accessible, with modern ventilation systems, which is why our government is delivering a major investment that accelerates construction to get it done for parents, students, and communities.”
The investment is part of the Ontario government’s commitment to provide $14 billion to support school construction over ten years. Since 2018, the government has approved nearly 200 new projects and there are currently more than 300 childcare and education building-related projects in development, with more than 100 actively under construction.
“A new St. Mary’s Catholic Secondary School is great news for our community,” said Walker. “This investment will provide choice and flexibility for families and new opportunities for local students and for the next generation.”
“Under Premier Ford’s leadership, our government is delivering more schools across the province to support the needs of Ontario’s students, families and growing communities. By cutting red tape and introducing the Rapid Build pilot project to expedite procurement and construction processes to build better schools faster, we’re ensuring that students reap the benefits of state-of-the-art learning facilities sooner and have access to education in a safe and healthy environment.” said Kinga Surma, Minister of Infrastructure. “These investments are just one of the ways we’re building critical infrastructure – such as schools, hospitals, long-term care homes and public transit – that Ontarians rely on with a budget over $148 billion over the next decade.”
“We are so pleased with the announcement of funding for a new St. Mary’s Catholic High School. Our Catholic High School in Owen Sound has been experiencing overcrowding for many years and we look forward to opening the doors to a new and innovative space that is right sized for our staff and students. This is very exciting news for BGCDSB, the City of Owen Sound and the surrounding area,” said Board Chair Lori DiCastri
“We are very excited about this announcement. The building of a new St. Mary’s High School is needed and is great news for our community. The building of a new school will provide a modern space for our students to learn. We are grateful for this announcement and are thankful to all those involved in working on this application. We Look forward to the opening of a new St. Mary’s High School,” said Director of Education Gary O’Donnell.
For 2022-23, the province is also providing school boards with $1.4 billion in funding to renew and maintain existing schools.
The governments of Canada and Ontario are providing $656.5 million in funding for critical infrastructure projects to protect students and staff from COVID-19 in the province’s schools through the COVID-19 Resilience stream of the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program.