South Kamloops Secondary renovations made top priority

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KAMLOOPS - Some much needed renovations for South Kamloops Secondary will be completed, but the funds will come out of the school board’s pocket and not from the provincial government as hoped.

The district has plans to rebuild the school entirely, however, this is a five to eight year process. Harper says the board was told South Kam had 'maximum another ten years of use' and renovations are needed to keep the school functional until a full rebuild can be done.

School District 73 Chair Denise Harper says the board will be dipping into its capital reserve to fund the roughly $400,000 needed to repair the secondary school. Original estimates pegged the renovations at $1 million but a report submitted to the board has indicated half of that amount would suffice.

South Kamloops Secondary, originally built in 1951, has been deemed an antiquated space not equipped for the needs of modern students.

Not only is Wifi connectivity an issue in the school but the washrooms, change rooms and gymnasium have all become issues. Harper says the gym change rooms are located in the school's basement 'in a dungeon.'

South Kamloops has been moved to the top of the priority list, putting it ahead of Westmount Elementary. Westmount’s student population has exceeded its capacity and it needs additional classroom and parking spaces. 

“We felt considering the antiquity of the current campus we really needed to push forward,” Harper says of South Kamloops Secondary. “We try to be mindful of the effect the environment has on student and teacher morale.”

The board plans to meet with MLAs Terry Lake and Todd Stone and actively petition the provincial to provide funding for a new building.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Dana Reynolds at dreynolds@infonews.ca or call 250-819-6089. To contact an editor, email mjones@infonews.ca or call 250-718-2724.


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