News release

School Site Selection Process Reduces Time to Open New Schools

From start to finish, opening a new school in Nova Scotia will take less time, now that a new site selection process is in place.

“Getting a new school is very exciting for communities, but often, under the old process, lengthy delays meant some schools took up to six years to complete,” said Zach Churchill, Minister of Education and Early Childhood Development. “The new, simplified process can significantly reduce this time so families don’t have to wait longer than necessary to benefit from a new school.”

As part of the new site selection process the school community will continue to have input on school design. The process also requires the following:

  • in the case of a replacement school, the existing school site will be considered first, before looking for a new site
  • engineers will conduct a technical site review to first ensure the site is appropriate, considering things like access to power, water, sewage, transportation, proximity to the community it will serve and other criteria
  • if two or more viable sites meet the technical criteria, the community will be consulted on the preferred option
  • in a situation where there is only one suitable site option, government may choose to proceed with building a school in the location and will provide information to the public on the site

Government is also introducing a revised long-term school capital plan process.

Under the new capital plan process, Regional Centres for Education, the Conseil scolaire acadien provincial and staff from the Departments of Education and Early Childhood Development and Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal, will form a committee to review and prioritize proposed capital projects.

A complete list of projects, assigned a priority rank of high, medium or low, will be provided to government for final decisions based on budget and regional fairness considerations.

FOR BROADCAST USE:

New schools in Nova Scotia will take less time to open.

Government has introduced a new site selection process that will simplify where new schools will be built.

The new process includes a technical site review by provincial engineers and community consultation if there are two or more acceptable sites.

Minister of Education and Early Childhood Development Zach Churchill says under the old process, it took some schools up to six years to open. The new process can significantly reduce that time.

Government also introduced a revised long-term school capital plan process.

Under the new process, regions and government will work together to prioritize projects that will then go to government for a final decision based on budget and regional fairness.

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