Construction to begin in Spring 2019 on four new schools and a major renovation in four First Nation communities in Northern Manitoba
WINNIPEG, TREATY 1 TERRITORY, MB, Nov. 16, 2018 /CNW/ - The Government of Canada is working in partnership with First Nation communities to invest in new and upgraded school facilities on reserve, and to support students in getting the best start in life through education.
Today, the Honourable Jane Philpott, Minister of Indigenous Services, joined Chief Timothy Muskego, Chief Gilbert Andrews, Chief Oliver Okemow and Chief Gary Knott to announce an investment of $248 million for new school infrastructure in four First Nations in northern Manitoba. Bunibonibee Cree Nation, God's Lake First Nation, Manto Sipi Cree Nation, and Wasagamack First Nation have signed a contract to build four new schools in their communities. Funding for major renovations to an existing school at Bunibonibee Cree Nation is also part of this announcement.
Today's announcement is among the largest infrastructure contracts ever awarded by First Nations in partnership with Indigenous Services Canada.
Each project has been designed in collaboration with community members, including students who will be attending the schools. In addition to maximizing opportunities for local training and employment, the schools will provide enhanced learning opportunities for students and reduce the need to move off-reserve to complete secondary education.
Construction is expected to start in spring 2019. Once completed, over 2,600 students in five schools will have access to modern and expanded facilities.
"Modern school facilities are essential to providing First Nation students with the best possible learning experience. Indigenous Services Canada is proud to partner with Bunibonibee Cree Nation, God's Lake First Nation, Manto Sipi Cree Nation, and Wasagamack First Nation to invest nearly $250 million for the construction of new school facilities. This investment also means that K-12 education will be available in all four communities so that students will not have to leave in order to complete high school. I look forward to the start of construction in Spring 2019!"
The Honourable Jane Philpott, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Indigenous Services
"For our children this has been a long dream. Today we celebrate with them as their dream has now become true. For every young person there has to be a real way to enjoy their youth and having a nice school is a powerful way."
Chief Timothy Muskego
Bunibonibee Cree Nation
- New schools at God's Lake First Nation, Manto Sipi First Nation, and Wasagamack First Nation will accommodate students from Kindergarten to Grade 12.
- In Bunibonibee Cree Nation, the existing Kindergarten to Grade 6 school will be renovated, and a new school for Grades 7 through 12 will also be constructed.
- The current school at God's Lake First Nation provides instruction from Kindergarten to Grade 9, and the school at Manto Sipi First Nation provides instruction from Kindergarten to Grade 11. The existing schools at Bunibonibee Cree Nation and Wasagamack First Nation presently offer instruction from Kindergarten to Grade 12.
- A contract of $190 million for these projects was signed by the chiefs of each First Nation and Penn-Co Construction Canada Ltd. on November 5, 2018. In addition to that amount, Indigenous Services Canada will be providing $58 million to support other expenses related to this project. Penn-Co will be the general project manager and will work with each First Nation to complete construction in their communities. This consolidated approach to procurement will provide a reduced overall cost for the construction of each school.
- Economic development opportunities as a result of this project include skills training and use of local labour, equipment purchase, aggregate material supply from quarry development, and site preparation to perform clearing and grubbing.
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SOURCE Indigenous Services Canada
For further information: media may contact: Rachel Rappaport, Press Secretary, Office of the Honourable Jane Philpott, Minister of Indigenous Services, 819-934-2796; Media Relations, Indigenous Services Canada, 819-953-1160, [email protected]