COMOX VALLEY – Vancouver Island MLAs are celebrating government funding, that is being funneled into school upgrades in the Comox Valley.

According to a release, NDP MLAs Ronna Rae Leonard and Scott Fraser say valley students “will benefit from safer, more efficient schools,” after the province directed than $1.8 million towards school upgrade projects in School District 71.

The Comox Valley School District is receiving $1,848,500 in funding for school maintenance projects, including:

 School Enhancement Program

  • Mark R. Isfeld Secondary: boiler and floor upgrades (Phase 1)
  • Cumberland Community School: HVAC and fire sprinkler system upgrades (Phase 1)
  • Royston Elementary: HVAC and fire sprinkler system upgrades (Phase 1)

Carbon Neutral Capital Program

  • Highland Secondary: replace boilers with a high efficiency boiler

According to the release, the funding programs are part of a $206 million provincial investment under the Annual Facilities Grant (AFG), School Enhancement Program, Carbon Neutral Capital Program and Bus Replacement Program, “to ensure students have well-maintained learning environments and bus services that are safe, comfortable and efficient.”

This year’s overall funding is a $500,000 increase from the previous year, and a $20.6 million increase from 2016/17.

“Students are far more successful when they have safe and comfortable learning environments,” said Leonard, the MLA for Courtenay-Comox. “After years of BC Liberal neglect, our government is providing increased funding to school districts to ensure that our children have well-maintained schools to learn in.”

“Under the BC Liberals, the needs of our students and teachers were ignored,” added Scott Fraser, MLA for Mid Island-Pacific Rim. “Our government is choosing to invest in children, teachers and school districts across the province, because when students succeed, everyone benefits.”

The New Democrat government says it has “delivered historic levels of funding to B.C. schools, including the biggest operative and capital budgets in B.C. history, an extra $1-billion in classroom funding over 2016/17, $2.7-billion over three years to build, seismically upgrade and expand K-12 schools, and a new annual $5-million playground fund.”