The questions below were submitted to the Pupil Accommodation Review email address(firstname.lastname@example.org) and answered by Lambton Kent District School Board administration.
I am wondering how the design of the new school will ensure that it has the best possible traffic control in place to accommodate students who walk to school, students who are bussed and students driving to ensure the best possible safety of all, especially with the current proposed site.
Should Recommendation 1 or 2 from the Final Staff Report move forward, the Architects assigned to the job, along with the transportation group will work with the Municipality and the school community to design the best possible outcome to accommodate students who walk to school, are bussed and those who drive.
I am wondering if there will be additional support staff such as councilors or social workers brought in to help students who struggle with the transition?
If there is a need for counselling at the school to support students in the transition this will be provided. This is done at the request of the school and/or transition committee when a consolidation is in progress.
I am wondering about before/after school support services and will there be an adequate facility in place to accommodate all students needing the services, also will it be open to all on first come first serve and not preference given to those who used it the previous year at Kinnwood if that is the site. I am also wondering if bussing will be able to be more flexible with the increased routes and if students who live farther from the school will be more easily able to get courtesy seats. Also wondering if there are late busses for the high school students would the primary students be able to ride that bus as well to help accommodate working parents who live far from Forest from having to come in to pick up from the daycare facility and/or sports and extra curriculars.
The County of Lambton presented on services at the Kinnwood Central Public School site at Working Meeting #2. They were supportive of making sure their services continue in a consolidated school. The site believes it can accommodate all potential students in the before and after school program. Unfortunately, the LKDSB does not run late buses at any of our high schools at present. In terms of courtesy seats, the number of available courtesy seats changes annually due to where students who attend the school in question live and the resulting routes that are put in effect to take them to school. For further reference, refer to the courtesy seat process on www.schoolbusinfo.com.
Has there been any thought put into collaborating with the municipal governments and the community to make the school more than just your average school? One thing that comes to mind, and this is just an example, is an aquatic center. Being beside the Lodge, the seniors and the rest of the community could make use of it. Add something special to the build that makes it a community hub but also attracts students to slow or stop the erosion of the student population. This community has built two arenas/community centers. If we see a cause that is worthwhile and will benefit us all, we will get on board, support it, and find creative ways to pay for it.
The Lambton Kent District School Board (LKDSB) cooperates with Municipal Governments and we would like to do that in this scenario as well. If there is a decision by the Trustees to build a new school at a new site or renovate and add on to Kinnwood Central Public School we would look for opportunities to create space that would be in the best interest of the community as well. In terms of an aquatic centre, the school board does not receive funding to build and operate such a site. There would have to be interest and discussion from the community.
Please take the long term use of your old facilities into account. To understand what I’m talking about, a drive by the former Kinnaird School will tell the whole story. To say the condition and use of that building is a disgrace would be understating it.
The LKDSB works with our communities to find the best solution in regard to schools that are no longer used by our students. However, if a property is sold it becomes the responsibility of the new owner.
Page 13 of the Guide to Pupil Accommodation Reviews: Including how school boards involve parents and the community in the review process, discusses the lease or sale of a school facility.
Should a school board decide that a closed school is no longer needed for the purposes of the board, the facility can be declared “surplus to the needs of the board.” School boards can then proceed to lease or sell the surplus property to other organizations, according to the process required in the Education Act.
In an effort to encourage public properties to remain in the public sphere, school boards are required to first offer their properties to other public sector organizations in priority order (which includes other school boards, municipalities and other levels of government). If the surplus property is not leased or purchased by the public sector, then the property may be offered on the open market.
The lease or sale of a school is not part of the Pupil Accommodation Review process specifically, but if a school is closed it may be declared “surplus to the needs of the board” at a later date.
I was looking at the maps on the County web site and I do not see where a running track and soccer field will fit on the Kinnwood property. Is 13 acres truly enough space for what is being proposed? If not, who owns the pond to the NW of the property? There is no chance of getting any property to the South of the lot. Wellington brothers will not part with it for less than residential rate and probably higher if you are perceived to be desperate. Regardless, this further illustrates the need to work with Lambton Shores.
At Public Meeting #2 a map was shown outlining where the track could go. The LKDSB owns the pond area discussed in the question and some of that land could be used which would make the prospect of an addition more palatable. There is a process with the Ministry of Education to purchase land in the scenario of an addition and that would be a possibility as well.
If you close all three and make one super school, where are the Port Franks students (K-8) are going to go since Grand Bend Public School is 10-15 minutes away?
Students from Grand Bend Public School will attend Secondary School at the Kindergarten to Grade 12 School in Forest Ontario. Their start date will occur after Grade 8. Port Franks students will stay within the present catchment area that they are in and attend Grand Bend P.S. until Grade 8.
If this super school goes ahead as planned, what is the cost going to be? I'm more concerned for the tax payers of not just Thedford, but the Municipality of Lambton Shores.
If the Final Staff Report Recommendation remains the same as the Initial Staff Report and Trustees for the Lambton Kent District School Board (LKDSB) vote in favour of this than the LKDSB will apply for the Ministry of Education’s School Consolidation Grant. This Grant has already been set up by the Ministry of Education to assist School Boards in Ontario with consolidating schools. There would be no additional burden on taxpayers.
If you don't do anything, would one be closed as per what was reported in the Standard Guide Advocate on October 13, 2016?
The LKDSB has over 8,000 unfunded pupil spaces. We do not receive enough funding presently to continue with the upkeep for the amount of schools we operate with respect to the number of students we have. Our enrolment is projected to continue to decline. Therefore, we need to consolidate to create more efficiency in the board. If we do not receive funding from the Ministry of Education with the consolidation grant the LKDSB has a recommendation to close Aberarder Central School and consolidate these students at Kinnwood Central School. In our Pupil Accommodation Report Aberarder Central School is projected to have 78 students by 2026.