The District School Board of Niagara has begun an accommodation review on two Wainfleet elementary schools and has proposed building a new elementary school that would combine three outdated schools.
The review will involve William E. Brown and Winger public schools and if approved would bring together the populations of William E. Brown, Winger, and St. Elizabeth Catholic elementary schools.
The DSBN and Niagara Catholic District School Board (NCDSB) would operate separate schools at the new school, similar to the joint-use partnership between Kate S. Durdan Public School and Loretto Catholic Elementary School, which share a space in Niagara Falls.
The DSBN’s accommodation review committee will begin work in May and include two public input meetings on May 16 and Sept. 20.
Although St. Elizabeth is not included in the accommodation review as part of the NCDSB, the DSBN said the NCDSB would consult with its community and partner with the DSBN on decisions surrounding the potential new school.
Both Winger and William E. Brown are using older buildings, said a DSBN release.
Winger was built in 1950, and William E. Brown was constructed in 1914.
The DSBN said it supported consolidation of the two schools to “provide students with a modern learning facility and create enrollment (sic) levels to support optimal programming.”
If approved, the new school would host more than 400 DSBN students, plus students from the catholic board.
The government of Ontario announced a temporary prohibition on most new accommodation reviews in the province in June 2017, however, reviews for joint-use school projects are permitted.
The review committee will hold its first meeting on May 10 to provide feedback on the staff report and if necessary may propose alternate solutions to the merger.
The final staff report will be presented by the committee to the DSBN in October, at which time the public will have an opportunity to present their concerns or ideas. A final decision is expected by November.
The DSBN encourages the public to get involved.
All reports, minutes and agendas of the AR committee will be posted to dsbn.org/arc.