PARRY SOUND, ON – If the school board has its way, Parry Sound will have a new mega school built in two years.
A committee was created at the North District School Board’s (NNDSB) meeting last week to find a company to design the new facility.
NNDSB Chair Jay Aspin understood members have to keep the two-year completion date realistic.
“That is my hope, because Parry Sound has waited a long time for a new school,” Aspin said. “In today’s world that’s probably an optimistic projection, but I am hoping it is achievable.”
Aspin said there are a lot of things out of the board’s control, like approval from the ministry of education and the time it takes to find a construction company.
“So two years would be optimal and no more than three,” Aspin said.
The chair added the board has about $20 million to $30 million to put towards the project. Right now they are looking for an architect to design the mega school that Aspin estimated will hold 650 to 700 students, from Junior Kindergarten up to Grade 12.
While enrollment has been decreasing the past few years, Aspin believed it might actually be a good thing.
“Inflation erodes the value of your dollar and we are hoping the decline in enrollment will offset that,” Aspin said. “The amount of money that was earmarked for the school, we are hoping will fit the bill.”
He added money can be saved by closing other schools and sending those students to the new facility.
There is no set date to put shovels into the ground. Aspin said the committee wants to find an architect and get the ball rolling as soon as possible.