The Ontario Ministry of Education has approved an additional $12.4 million to support increased pupil spaces and child care rooms in the new Lambton Kent District School Board (LKDSB) Kindergarten to Grade 12 school in Forest.
The new school will be located on a site directly west of the Shores Recreation Centre in Forest, located in the Municipality of Lambton Shores. The total Ministry of Education investment for the project has increased from $27.4 million to $39.8 million to accommodate a revised scope for the project for anticipated increased enrolment and additional child care spaces.
The Kindergarten to Grade 12 school will consolidate students from Aberarder Central School, Bosanquet Central School, Kinnwood Central School and North Lambton Secondary School. The facility will accommodate up to 1,186 pupil spaces and a three-room child care centre which will provide 49 new child care spaces.
“We are determined to build schools and expansions faster, part of our commitment to modernize schools in fast growing communities," said Stephen Lecce, Minister of Education. "We are proud to deliver this critical expansion in project scope for the new Forest K-12 School for area families, along with increasing funding, staffing and tutoring to help ensure students graduate with confidence that they can succeed in good-paying careers."
“Under the leadership of Premier Ford, our government is ensuring public schools are focused on teaching young people the critical reading, writing, science and math skills that will prepare them for the rest of their lives," said Lambton-Kent-Middlesex MPP Monte McNaughton. “This investment is fantastic news for our community and will ensure that families and students in Forest have access to world-class learning, close to home, for years to come."
“We are grateful for the ongoing support from the Ministry of Education and Lambton-Kent-Middlesex MPP Monte McNaughton's efforts to advocate on behalf of the LKDSB to support the Forest area community in order to build a state-of-the-art Kindergarten to Grade 12 school which will meet student and family needs," said LKDSB Chair Randy Campbell. “The increased scope for the project will allow us to be forward thinking in our design plans and increase pupil and child care spaces, as well as accommodate increased construction costs based on the current market."
The LKDSB Forest Area of Schools Transition Committee continues to meet regularly and updates are shared with the school communities through a dedicated website. LKDSB staff has met with school and community stakeholders, including Kettle & Stony Point First Nation, to develop plans for the school design. The final design requires Ministry of Education approval.
In accordance with Ministry processes and following appropriate approvals at the Ministry and Board levels, the LKDSB is planning for a possible groundbreaking in spring 2024. The overall project, including design, tender and construction, is likely to be a three-year process.
The timeline for completion of the Kindergarten to Grade 12 school is still to be determined.
Read the media release from Lambton-Kent-Middlesex MPP Monte McNaughton.
For additional information contact:
Randy Campbell, Chair of the Board, (226) 996-9717
John Howitt, Director of Education, (519) 336-1500 Ext 31297
For reference information contact:
Heather Hughes, Public Relations Officer, (519) 336-1500 Ext 31262