One high school?

At the very least, Carihi is reaching the end of its life and will need a complete rebuild soon

Carihi is celebrating its 50th birthday this year.

While that’s historic, and certainly something to be celebrated, it also means it’s expensive to continue to maintain. It came in at a .45 on the school district’s recent Facility Condition Assessment, which puts it squarely in the middle of the “Poor” category.

Timberline is relatively new – it’s the second-highest ranked facility in the district in terms of its physical condition – but it shares its space with the Campbell River campus of North Island College, which is expanding its programming every year, effecting Timberline’s operations.

So, beginning in 2019, during Phase Three of the district’s newly-approved 10-year Facility Plan, a business case will be developed for building one brand new high school for all secondary students in the district to take to the Ministry of Education.

The process of combining the schools into a new facility will take place in collaboration with the community and all stakeholders, and will take many years of planning, which is why it’s something the board and staff wanted to get into the new plan now.

Details are obviously not available yet in terms of where such a facility might be located within the community or what such a facility might contain, as we are still many years off from having those types of discussions.

Should the district not be able to convince the Ministry to build one new high school for the district to combine the two currently in use, they will, at the very least, be looking at a complete rebuild Carihi, as it will have run its course within the community by that point, and likely cost more to maintain than to rebuild.

If that’s what ends up happening, it’s possible the district will move to a “one-school, two-campus approach” to secondary education, which the report says may offer greater programming options for students.

See the entire 10-year Facility Plan for the school district at their website (sd72.bc.ca) under “District News.”