Frank H. MacDonald students starting school elsewhere
Students of Frank H. MacDonald Elementary School will be starting their 2018-19 school year in a different location.
The Chignecto-Central Regional Centre for Education said a recent assessment of Frank H MacDonald has turned up a structural issue that needs to be repaired before students and staff can return to the building.
Students are expected to return to school on Sept. 6.
As a result, the primary and Grade 4 students at F.H. MacDonald will relocate next door to East Pictou Middle School so the repairs, along with further renovations at the school, can be done. The pre-primary class scheduled to open its doors in September will relocate to Thorburn Consolidated.
Jennifer Rodgers, communications manager for the CCRCE, said during the major renovations project at Frank H. MacDonald, it was discovered the exterior wall system is not braced to the building structure on the second floor and roof level. During a severe weather event, the wall integrity may have been comprised.
The work will include anchoring the concrete masonry exterior walls to the steel structure of the building. The Department of Transportation and Infrastructure and Renewal is managing the renovations. Similarly, at Dr. WA MacLeod, a structural issue with the wall system was discovered. Further investigation revealed the interior concrete block wall also is not braced sufficiently to the building structure on the second floor and roof level.
Repairs are adding additional anchors from the concrete wall to the building’s steel structural components. The CCRCE is leading the repairs.
“While we recognize this is disruptive for teachers, staff, students and parents, we must err on the side of caution and conduct necessary repairs while the building is empty. Our students and staff’s safety must always be our top priority,” said Chris Boulter, system development supervisor for CCRCE. “We have a contingency plan in place to ensure we can support our students, parents and staff so they can have smooth transition for the start of the 2018/2019 school year. We deeply appreciate our school community’s patience as we move forward with these changes.”
Parents and guardians can access up-to-date information on the CCRCE website as details are confirmed. An open house session is being planned for all students and families relocation to allow for school and transportation questions, as well as a tour for the new location.
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