FERGUS – Fergus will be getting a new elementary school after funding was approved by the Ministry of Education.
Heather Loney, spokesperson for the Upper Grand District School Board (UGDSB), confirmed it will be getting almost $8.5 million to build a new 308-pupil elementary school.
No timeline has been given on construction. A new high school in Guelph was approved in 2018 and has yet to break ground.
Peter Sovran, UGDSB director of education, and Linda Busuttil, UGDSB chair, said in a joint statement they were thrilled to receive this funding to serve the Centre Wellington Community.
“This area continues to grow with substantial residential development approved and underway,” Sovran and Busuttil said in a press release.
“This funding will allow us to expand to continue to meet the needs of the Centre Wellington community.”
A past report to the board noted there are plans to build around 1,500 housing units in northwest Fergus and another 4,000 units in Centre Wellington over the next 10 years.
Existing area schools would not have the capacity to accommodate the growth without significant investment in expansion.
Loney said this approval was part of the province’s 2021-22 capital priorities grant program and was the board’s only project submission in this round of the grant program.
A press release from MPP Randy Pettapiece noted this project is part of a province-wide investment of more than $600 million to support new school and child care spaces. This investment will support 78 school and child care related projects across the province.
Pettapiece’s release states the site for the new school has yet to be acquired. However the UGDSB has secured a purchase option for a roughly six-acre designated school site in the Storybrook subdivision along Colborne Street.