There were cheers and applause at Sherwood Elementary on Friday after government announced the Charlottetown neighbourhood would be receiving a new, $19 million school.
Principal Jean Boudreau said the more than 60-year-old school is badly due for an update and government's news that the capital budget would earmark enough cash for a brand new school was welcome news in his office.
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"There was a group of us who were standing around inside our office, and what we started doing was clapping and cheering, because we've been working on this for quite some time," he said.
'When you look at the building, it does need to be replaced.' —Jean Boudreau
Parents have pushed for a new school in the neighbourhood in the past and Boudreau agrees with their concerns. He said the school needs more space to accommodate the roughly 500 students in the zone and that staff have even had to redesign some classrooms to try and make things work.
"The school was well built, it's lasted this long, but it was not designed really to deliver education the way we're expected to deliver it today," he said.
"When you look at the building, it does need to be replaced."
Overcrowding still an issue: Stratford Mayor
While Sherwood staff and parents are happy with the announcement, across the bridge in Stratford Mayor David Dunphy said the town's two schools are only getting 14 new classrooms between them to address overcrowding.
"By the time these classrooms are built, based on our calculations, we'll be looking at probably an at-capacity school or an over capacity school," he said.
"I don't exactly know all the details of what the solution is. If it's just 14 classrooms, it's probably not the answer."
The five-year plan also includes:
- $11.7 million for more than 100 new school buses
- $10.4 million for classroom technology
- $10 million for capital repairs to schools such as roofs, windows, floors and paving
- $1.25 million for trades training equipment
- $750,000 for museums
- $237,500 to move the Morell EYC into the consolidated school
Construction is expected to begin in 2018 in Stratford and in 2019 for the new Sherwood school. The province hasn't revealed where the new school is expected to be built.
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