POPLAR HILL FIRST NATION, ON, Nov. 10, 2014 /CNW/ - Natural Resources Minister and Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario, Greg Rickford, today attended a sod-turning ceremony at the Poplar Hill First Nation, marking an important partnership with the Government of Canada in building a new school for the community.
Slated to open in September 2016, the new, high quality, sustainable school will be a 2,309 square metre facility designed for an enrollment of 173 students Kindergarten to grade 9. It will be built in a cost-effective and efficient manner, bundling design and construction under a single contractor, with construction set to begin shortly after the design phase.
Funding for this project follows a commitment made in Economic Action Plan 2012, with the Government of Canada providing funding for the design and construction phase of the new school.
- Poplar Hill First Nation has a registered on‐reserve population of 591 and is located in northwestern Ontario, approximately 125 kilometers north-northeast of the town of Red Lake.
- Between April 1, 2008, and March 31, 2013, Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada invested approximately $613 million for 372 education facilities projects, including new construction, additions, renovations and minor upgrades of existing on-reserve education facilities.
- The contract for building the school has been granted to the design/build team of Number 10 Architectural Group and NDL Construction Limited.
- For more information on the Government of Canada's investment in First Nations' school infrastructure, please visit the online Education Facilities Progress Report – April 2008 to March 2013.
"I'm pleased to join the Poplar Hill First Nation in turning the first shovel of soil as an official launch of what is to be an exciting time in building a new school for the community. We remain committed to ensuring that Aboriginal children have a quality learning environment. We are working in partnership with Poplar Hill First Nation on a cost-effective and innovative design-build approach to ensure their youth has the same educational facilities as those enjoyed by other students in Canada."
Minister of Natural Resources and Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario
"The community of Poplar Hill has been working on this project for more than ten years. The school is an extremely important facility in our community since it provides our children with an environment where they can learn, grow and work toward a future filled with hope and success. We applaud the government for presenting us with an innovative option that has allowed this important project to move forward."
Chief Alice Suggashie
Poplar Hill First Nation
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SOURCE: Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada
For further information: Erica Meekes, Press Secretary, Office of the Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development, 819-997-0002; Media Relations, Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada, 819-953-1160