The province has granted Hamilton's public school board money to build a new high school in the lower city.

The Ministry of Education will give the Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board nearly $40 million for capital projects, including a $31.8-million school to replace Delta, Parkview and Sir John A. Macdonald schools.

It has also approved a $5.4-million addition to Saltfleet District High School and more than $3.5 million to upgrade George R. Allan Elementary School, which will encompass students after the closure of Prince Philip elementary.

"We're excited about what this represents: support to help us create the most engaging 21st-century learning spaces for our students," board chair Tim Simmons said in a media release late Wednesday night.

The announcement does not include two major items on the board's wish list. Those were:

  • A new high school on the Mountain to replace Barton, Hill Park and Mountain schools, although the ministry will support the purchase of land to build a school.
  • A new high school in Dundas to replace Parkside and Highland, to be built on the current Highland property.

Trustees will now discuss ways the board can use its own funding sources to pay for the rest of its recent accommodation decisions, it said in the media release.

In particular, it will discuss whether the sale of surplus property can fund construction of the Mountain school, and the cost to build or renovate in Dundas.

The funding supports the board's strategy to have schools that give kids a broad range of choices, director John Malloy said in the release.

"Students need great facilities and engaging programs so they can achieve their goals. This announcement moves us closer to that reality."