The Strait Regional School Board (SRSB) gathered at an Antigonish County school for its latest regular monthly meeting, to enable board members a close-up look at major renovations carried out at the building over the past two years.
Last week’s board meeting took place in the new gymnasium at St. Andrew’s Consolidated School, one of several upgrades completed over the course of a three phase upgrade carrying a price tag of $3.9 million. Other upgrades to the school included interactive learning spaces for elementary-grade students, changes to the staff room, a new music room, an overhaul to the school library, a new area for the province-wide SchoolsPlus program, and a new school bus pick-up and drop-off area.
“…It’s great for the board members to see the work finally coming to completion,” board chair Francine Boudreau told reporters following the June 1 meeting. “A few years back, when this board was first (elected, in 2012), we did a tour of all the buildings. So it’s nice to see the upgrades and all the different classroom spaces as they come together in the new form.”
While SRSB superintendent of schools Ford Rice confirmed that there is “more internal work to be done” to bring an older section of the school up to modern standards, he praised the work carried out by contractors involved in the project, as well as staff, students and parents connected to St. Andrew’s Consolidated School.
“From all reports, staff, parents and guardians were very pleased with the changes to this school,” said Rice, who recalled that the new gymnasium had its formal debut last December with its hosting of the school’s Christmas concert. “Slowly but surely, we’re making significant changes to the school. There’s still some other work to be done, obviously, but we’re very pleased with the work that has been done to date with the support we’ve been given from the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development…”
With this in mind, Rice and other SRSB officials were pleased to see the impact of school upgrades that were approved months earlier at their central office in Port Hastings.
“The motion was passed a number of years ago to start the process of renovations to St. Andrew’s Consolidated School. So it lets board members see the actual results of their work and the work that we do for students in the Strait region each and every day.”