Walnut Park Elementary School students went back to school Sept. 7 to a brand new building. (Thom Barker photo)

Walnut Park Elementary School students went back to school Sept. 7 to a brand new building. (Thom Barker photo)

Walnut Park open house scheduled for Sept. 18

The public will get a chance to get an up-close look at the new Walnut Park Elementary School two weeks after kids got back to class.

An open house and official ribbon-cutting ceremony has been scheduled for Sept. 18 at 1 p.m.

The $34.1 million project was originally slated for completion for the 2020 school year, but had to be pushed back for several reasons including the land on which it was slated to be built had not fully compressed.

The new two-story building was constructed with 21st-century learning in mind including an open classroom concept and a neighbourhood learning centre.

The facility also contains a daycare that the Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD) has said will provide 42 new childcare spaces in the region.

Funding for the project came from a number of sources, including the Ministry of Education ($29.2 million) and the MCFD ($2.5 million toward the daycare), with SD54 picking up the remaining $2.4 million of the bill.

Kids were back in school as of Sept. 7.

Still to be completed is a new $300,000 Totem Pole being carved by master carver Ron Austin. SD54 intends for the carving to take place on the site of the old school so students can be involved in the project.

The 45-foot totem is being designed to be seen from the highway with a theme of children reaching for academic excellence going up the pole to their eventual success at the top of the pole, said Birdy Markert, Indigenous principal for SD54, and the person primarily in charge of the project.

 

Walnut Park Elementary School students went back to school Sept. 7 to a brand new building. (Thom Barker photo)

Walnut Park Elementary School students went back to school Sept. 7 to a brand new building. (Thom Barker photo)