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'We'll all be under one roof': Yellowknife's francophone school expands

Students at École Allain St-Cyr in Yellowknife are excited for the expansion of their school, which includes two new classrooms, more common space, and the school's first gymnasium.

N.W.T. MLAs and school officials launch $12.8 million construction project

Students at École Allain St-Cyr in Yellowknife look over the plans for the new wing of their school. (Mitch Wiles/CBC)

Students at Allain St-Cyr school in Yellowknife are excited for the expansion of their school, which includes two new classrooms, more common space, and the school's first gymnasium.

The school board and parents' association representing French-speaking students in the Northwest Territories fought for the new facilities in court for about a decade while students were being bused to other gymnasiums in the city.

On Friday, N.W.T. MLAs launched the $12.8-million construction project with a ground-breaking ceremony.

N.W.T. MLAs and school officials launch the $12.8 million expansion of École Allain St-Cyr. (Mitch Wiles/CBC)

"Finally to hear that we are actually going to get it is pretty important to us," said Mathieu D'Aigle, a Grade 10 student at Allain St-Cyr.

"I think it is something really useful because we will have more room and more people that maybe will want to stay at our school."

'Finally to hear that we are actually going to get it is pretty important to us,' says Mathieu D’Aigle, Grade 10 student. (Kate Kyle / CBC)

Yvonne Careen, superintendent of the N.W.T.'s Commission scolaire de francophone, said the expansion is about equal access to infrastructure and school pride.

"We are at the point where we're borrowing classrooms from another school," Careen said.

"[Now] we'll all be under one roof. We'll be able to develop a synergy. [Students] will be able to develop their identity. Their school pride. It means so much."

Careen said classes should officially begin in the new wing in January 2019.

Main floor plan for Allain St-Cyr school expansion project. (Mitch Wiles/CBC)

With files from Kate Kyle

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