Provincial Capital Priorities program promises to expand and renovate schools and childcare spaces

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Ontario Construction News staff writer

Ontario’s government launched the 2019-20 Capital Priorities program Monday, providing $1.4 billion in major project funding for school boards. The program also provides $1 billion in funds over the next five years for 10,00 new school-based childcare spots, which helps fulfill the province’s commitment to build up to 10,000 new childcare spaces in schools.

School boards are invited to submit their top 10 school-based capital priorities for the next three years, for consideration to receive funding.

Funding includes School Condition Improvement (SCI) which allows school boards to improve aging building components, and School Renewal Allocation (SRA), through which boards can address energy efficiency and accessibility requirements of their buildings.

Funds accessed through applications this year must be used by the school boards by 2023-24. The ministry reviews applications for eligibility and announces successful projects annually.

“We are investing in our students and their futures by building new schools and renovating existing schools because I believe better schools mean better learning environments for the next generation,” said Stephen Lecce, minister of education. “This government is taking decisive action to ensure students have safe and modern learning environments that enable their success in the classroom, in life, and in the labour market,” Lecce said.

Budget 2019 allows for nearly $13 billion in capital grants investments over the next decade.

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