Twin Rivers Elementary School will be replacing its boilers and direct digital-control system thanks to new funding announced last week by Education Minister Mike Bernier.
Provincial School Enhancement Program funding will be providing $515,900 for the project. “This is extra funding that the province has released,” explained SD20 secretary-treasurer Natalie Verigin. Twin Rivers is one of 217 schools whose improvement projects were approved.
“Through the School Enhancement Program, we are continuing to deliver on our commitment to help school districts protect, preserve and extend the life of their schools,” said Bernier. “We are doing this to ensure that our students have the secure, safe and comfortable environment they need to succeed. Since the launch of this successful program, we’ve invested over $100 million in school improvement projects throughout the province.”
School districts applied for the funding back in September. According to the provincial press release, “successful projects were chosen based on need, priority and how well they support student learning and safety.”
Arrangements to replace the two boilers that have been around since 1995 and the control system are already under way and the district hopes to have the project completed as soon as possible. “We are very happy about it,”said Verigin. “Our boilers in our schools, we are slowly replacing them, and Twin Rivers is the next one that is due.” Verigin also explained that the control system will allow operators to set the system to run in a very efficient manner.
“It means we don’t have to use money that the board has set aside for emergencies or cost overruns,” added Verigin. “We were getting close to thinking… that we were going to have to dip into our own cash resources to do the project — so this is good.”
SD20 has also received some additional funding from the province to help pay for the replacement of a bus that was damaged by a small motor fire last year. ICBC settled the district’s claim by writing off the bus. The extra $92,000 in provincial funding will make up the difference between the ICBC payout and the cost of the new bus which should arrive in the spring.