Ex­pec­ta­tions are high for a new ele­men­tary school in Yar­mouth.

Com­ple­tion date for new ele­men­tary school pushed back a year

Tri-County Vanguard - - FRONT PAGE - ERIC BOURQUE

A new ele­men­tary school in Yar­mouth will open a year later than ini­tially ex­pected, with the fa­cil­ity now slated to open in Septem­ber 2019.

Con­struc­tion of the new school, which will be built at the cor­ner of Pa­rade and Brunswick streets – the for­mer site of Yar­mouth’s ju­nior high school – was de­layed by a cou­ple of fac­tors, says Zach Churchill, Nova Sco­tia’s ed­u­ca­tion min­is­ter and Yar­mouth MLA.

The ten­der for the project came back higher than what had been bud­geted and then a pro­vin­cial elec­tion was called.

“Gov­ern­ment’s not al­lowed to make any an­nounce­ments or move for­ward with any de­ci­sion dur­ing the writ pe­riod,” Churchill said, adding Trea­sury Board ap­proval was needed for ad­di­tional funds to cover the higher ten­der price.

The ten­der went to Avon­dale Con­struc­tion. (Their bid came in at $14,160,949.) Churchill says lo­cal sub- con­trac­tors will get work through the project as well.

As for how soon work on the new school will be­gin, he said, “usu­ally it starts about two weeks after the ten­der is awarded, so I would sus­pect that con­struc­tion would be im­mi­nent.”

Churchill ac­knowl­edges any de­lay can be dis­ap­point­ing or frus­trat­ing for those look­ing for­ward to hav­ing a new fa­cil­ity up and run­ning.

“But at the end of the day,” he said, “we’re go­ing to have a brand new school that’s go­ing to be mod­ern and is go­ing to pro­vide a really good ed­u­ca­tion to our kids in Yar­mouth and I think that’s some­thing the com­mu­nity is very ex­cited about.”

Stu­dents presently at­tend­ing Yar­mouth Cen­tral School will at­tend the new fa­cil­ity. This in­cludes stu­dents from the for­mer South Cen­ten­nial School, which closed in June 2016.

When the Tri-County Re­gional School Board de­cided to close South Cen­ten­nial at the end of the 2015-16 aca­demic year and merge the South Cen­ten­nial and Cen­tral school pop­u­la­tions, the time­line from the prov­ince was that the new ele­men­tary school would open in Septem­ber 2018.

It has been a year since the for­mer Yar­mouth Ju­nior High School was de­mol­ished at the Pa­rade Street site where the new ele­men­tary school will be built.

TINA COMEAU

The site where Yar­mouth’s new ele­men­tary school will be built.

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