June 19, 2007

Tender Awarded for Final Phase of New High School in Corner Brook

Construction is set to begin on the final phase of the redevelopment of Herdman Collegiate in Corner Brook, with the awarding of a tender to local company Brooke Enterprises.

"I am pleased to inform the residents of Corner Brook that a recent review of the budget for the redevelopment has determined that the costs are reasonable and necessary for a building that will house approximately 1,000 students," said the Honourable Joan Burke, Minister of Education. "The project will now proceed as planned, with every effort to have it completed and opened to the students of Corner Brook by fall 2008 or at the very latest, January 2009."

Minister Burke noted that this phase of construction is the most significant, as it includes the majority of the actual new construction. The school will have two skilled trades suites, a quality physical education and fitness centre and ample classroom and instructional space.

"The redevelopment of Herdman is just one of many renovation and new construction projects underway in the province," said Minister Burke. "Budget 2007 will see over $49 million for repairs, maintenance and new school construction. This includes a 67 per cent increase to school district operating grants, from 55 cents to 92 cents per square foot.

"Projects are happening all over the province � in Port Saunders and L�Anse au Loup, Wesleyville, Baie Verte and Middle Arm, Torbay, Mobile, Placentia, Beachy Cove and others. While unprecedented funding is being allocated for our education system, it is important that, as a government, we act responsibly, ensuring that as these projects move ahead, funding is being properly allocated and spent wisely," said Minister Burke.

For the first time in the history of the province, the budget for education, for both the K-12 and post-secondary systems, has surpassed $1 billion.

"I am very pleased that the final contract has been awarded and this most important project is moving forward," said the Honourable Tom Marshall, MHA for the District of Humber East. "With this announcement, the Williams Government is honouring its commitment to the students and parents of the Corner Brook region."

Minister Burke took the opportunity to acknowledge the efforts of students, parents and teachers in Corner Brook, as well as the school district, to make the transition period to a new high school as positive an experience as possible. "I understand that the temporary location for Corner Brook high school students is not ideal," said Minister Burke. "However, they have done a tremendous job in coming together as a single school community."


Media contact:
Jacquelyn Howard
Director of Communications
Department of Education
709-729-0048, 689-2624

2007 06 19                                                    4:20 p.m.


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