Prov­ince ap­proves fund­ing for new Delia School

The Drumheller Mail - - FRONT PAGE - Pa­trick Ko­lafa The Drumheller Mail file­photo

Prairie Land School Di­vi­sion (PLRD) has been ap­proved by Al­berta Ed­u­ca­tion for fund­ing to re­place Delia School.

On March 23, Al­berta Ed­u­ca­tion an­nounced it has al­lo­cated $383 mil­lion for 20 new pro­jects which in­cludes seven new schools, seven re­place­ment, and three mod­ern­iza­tions, as well as ad­di­tions. Delia School was on the list.

“It was a pleas­ant sur­prise,” said PLRD su­per­in­ten­dent Cam McKeage. “For the Vil­lage of Delia and staff and stu­dents, I think it is fan­tas­tic.”

Min­is­ter of Ed­u­ca­tion David Eggen says ed­u­ca­tion is a high pri­or­ity for the prov­ince.

“Our gov­ern­ment knows that sta­bil­ity in the school sys­tem helps stu­dents and their fam­i­lies, and we will con­tinue to pro­tect these core ser­vices for Al­ber­tans. We know that in­vest­ing in ed­u­ca­tion is one of the most im­por­tant in­vest­ments we can make in our prov­ince’s fu­ture, and that is why we will con­tinue to make these im­por­tant in­vest­ments,” said Eggen.

McKeage said the school di­vi­sion has been look­ing at re­plac­ing the school for about three years.

“We have been quite thor­ough in the plan­ning process and we have done a lot of work ahead of time in terms of iden­ti­fy­ing the needs and struc­turally that school needs re­place­ment,” said McKeage. “We lo­cated the ar­eas of con­cern, and we were op­ti­mistic a new school would come into place.” The new school will be a full K-12 school and will be built on the site cur­rently owned by PLRD.

“A re­build is a lot bet­ter than a mod­ern­iza­tion be­cause it does not af­fect classes,” he said. “It has been a top pri­or­ity for us. We rec­og­nize the foun­da­tion was fin­ished. It is ac­tu­ally a school built with porta­bles, and the porta­bles them­selves have ex­ceeded their life­span as well.”

A bud­get has not yet been de­ter­mined, and he ex­plains there is no firm timeline.

“When the prov­ince makes

Con­tin­ued on Page 3 See Delia gets

these an­nounce­ments, they see it as a four-year com­ple­tion date from start to fin­ish,” he said. “On the re­builds, we are hop­ing that will be a lot quicker. The mod­ern­iza­tions are usu­ally slower, and the re­builds are quite fast.

PLRD re­cently com­pleted a suc­cess­ful mod­ern­iza­tion of JC Charyk School in Hanna. “We have a very com­mit­ted fa­cil­i­ties di­rec­tor and all the schools in Prairie Land are well main­tained and well looked af­ter,” said McKeage

There are about 140 stu­dents at­tend­ing Delia School.

“The pop­u­la­tion in the Ward of Delia is quite con­sis­tent and healthy. It is a great lit­tle vil­lage and a great com­mu­nity. Ob­vi­ously, this will be a fan­tas­tic ad­di­tion to the Vil­lage of Delia.

Al­berta Ed­u­ca­tion an­nounced on March 23 the ag­ing Delia School will be re­placed.

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