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NDHS to use classroom space at C2

Classrooms at the Centennial Centre that were abandoned by Portage College will have students in them again this September as Notre Dame High School (NDHS) has entered into an agreement to use the space while their main campus undergoes renovations.
Notre Dame High School has entered into a one-year agreement to use the empty classroom space at the Centennial Centre.
Notre Dame High School has entered into a one-year agreement to use the empty classroom space at the Centennial Centre.

Classrooms at the Centennial Centre that were abandoned by Portage College will have students in them again this September as Notre Dame High School (NDHS) has entered into an agreement to use the space while their main campus undergoes renovations.

Grade 9 students from NDHS will be using the old Portage College wing of the C2 full-time during the first semester of the upcoming school year. The site will have one full-time teacher – Mr. Desnoyers – and one full-time administrator – Vice Principal Mr. Cey.

“We are always looking to provide optimal learning environments for our students,” said NDHS Principal Pamela Guilbault. “When the available space at the C2 presented itself we jumped at the opportunity.”

A one-year agreement to use the facility was made official last Wednesday when the Lakeland Catholic School District (LCSD) board voted in favour of acquiring the additional space.

The decision from the board was unanimous, as trustees wanted the students at NDHS to be provided with the best possible learning environment while their school undergoes a much-needed modernization.

Originally teachers at the school were going to create three temporary classrooms in the gymnasium to help offset the six classrooms currently under construction.

While the makeshift classrooms would have solved the problem, Guilbault felt the C2 offered the students and staff a better space to continue their day-to-day activities.

“We knew that having that discrete learning environment would be better than having the temporary classroom space in the gym,” said Guilbault. “It also frees up that gym space for our students at the main Notre Dame campus to use.”

The Grade 10, 11 and 12 students at the main NDHS campus will now have complete access to the gym during the entirety of the renovation project.

Along with getting access to the classrooms available at the C2, students from NDHS will be able to use the field house, auditorium, wellness centre, walking track and public eating area. The open access to everything the C2 offers will allow NDHS the ability to provide its students with a “very diverse learning environment,” according to Guilbault.

So far Guilbault says she has only made plans for how the school is going to operate for the first semester of the year. Decisions on how to use their newly acquired space for the second semester are expected to by made in the near future.

As for the main campus, renovation work on the building has progressed well over the course of the summer months with much of the inside upgrades already complete.

The CTS lab and six classrooms in the back wing of the school have been destroyed. Upgrades have been made to the “guts” of the school, with updated electrical wiring installed, along with an overhaul of the school's plumbing and heating systems.

During the school year construction will focus on the creation of a new gymnasium and CTS lab, along with finishing the upgrades to the six back classrooms.

Areas of the school under construction will remain blocked off to the students and should have minimal impact on the day-to-day activities taking place in the school, according to Guilbault.

“We will be ready for the first day of school,” said Guilbault. “The construction, although it is presenting some challenges for us, we are turning those challenges into opportunities. With the current staff that we have and the skill and creativity they are showing these challenges have become nothing but opportunities for our students.”

Students are set to return to schools across the Lakeland on Aug. 31.




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