Two Progressive Conservative MLAs want Education Minister Zach Churchill to keep his promise to open new schools in Wedgeport and Springhill in September 2021.
“Time is passing, and little progress is being made on building these schools,” said Argyle-Barrington MLA Chris d’Entremont. “People in Wedgeport and in Springhill want and deserve to know that the schools they were promised are still a priority for government.”
A replacement for École Wedgeport was announced in April 2018. The project’s estimated start is listed as 2019-20 in the Capital Plan.
d’Entremont said no site has been selected for the school and the date that the school is scheduled to open has been pushed back by a year. Recent flooding at the school has renewed call to get construction started.
“Residents have waited long enough,” he said. “It’s time for the government to get moving on this school and prove it’s more than a political promise.”
A replacement for Springhill Elementary school has been a political football. The new project, scheduled to open September 2021, was announced immediately before the 2018 by-election in Cumberland South. Since then, plans for the new school have sputtered.
“I don’t want the Springhill Elementary to be another election promise in two years,” said Cumberland South MLA Tory Rushton. “I want the government to fulfill their promise from the last election.”
Rushton has regularly written to Minister Churchill to get progress updates on the new school. Last month, the Minister said issues with the potential site of the school had arisen and a structural engineering consultant was being brought in to advise.
“Please note if the community centre site proves unsuitable, government will consider other sites within Springhill for the location of the new school,” the Minister wrote.
Rushton hopes this doesn’t put the project back to square one.
“Springhill families have waited a long time for this school,” Rushton said. “I am asking the Minister to reassure the students, parents and teachers that the plan is not stalled.”