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Powell River school district capital funds received

Upgrades will be made at James Thomson Elementary School and Kelly Creek Community School
CAPITAL PROJECTS: James Thomson Elementary School will be receiving upgrades to its heating, ventilation and air conditioning system, as well as energy upgrades. Kelly Creek Community School will also be receiving energy upgrades.

School District 47 will be receiving more than $2 million for capital projects.

Steve Hopkins, secretary treasurer at School District 47, said last spring, as part of the school district’s annual capital planning process, the board of education supported staff recommendations to pursue ministry of education support for HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) and energy upgrades at James Thomson Elementary School, and energy upgrades at Kelly Creek Community School.

“While our mechanical systems throughout the district are well-maintained and performed well during the pandemic, some of the equipment in the older buildings are nearing their end, so this funding is very welcomed news,” said Hopkins. “The HVAC projects will renew the equipment, as well as modernize the systems, by adding digital environmental controls, similar to what is already in place at both Brooks Secondary and Westview Elementary schools, and the energy improvements will follow similar lighting upgrades done in recent years at Texada School and Brooks. All of these efforts are part of School District 47’s ongoing efforts to reduce its carbon footprint while also reducing costs.”

According to a media release from the ministry of education and child care, School District 47 will receive a total of $2,096,145. The release stated that under the school enhancement program, there will be HVAC upgrades at James Thomson. Under the carbon neutral capital program, there will be energy upgrades at James Thomson and energy upgrades at Kelly Creek.

The release stated that students throughout BC will soon be learning in safer, improved schools now that more funding is available to school districts.

“We are making historic investments in school capital projects across the province,” stated Rachna Singh, minister of education. “Schools are the cornerstones of our communities, and our government is continuing to invest in our school infrastructure to ensure that our kids have clean, safe, modern places to learn, grow and play.”

As part of Budget 2023, the province is providing $261.1 million in 2023 – 24 for school maintenance projects, including $41 million to upgrade HVAC systems at 101 schools throughout BC.