The Hornby Island Community School was destroyed by fire in 2018, but a new school is slated to open next year. File photo

The Hornby Island Community School was destroyed by fire in 2018, but a new school is slated to open next year. File photo

New Hornby Island school scheduled to open September 2022

The Government of B.C. is providing $10.4 million for a new, 95-seat Hornby Island Community School, replacing the previous building that was lost in a fire in August 2018.

“Students deserve to learn in safe and inspiring schools that give them the best chance to succeed,” Minister of Education Jennifer Whiteside said in a news release. “With a new, modern school coming to Hornby Island, local students will have a better learning experience for generations to come. This will be more than a new school. As a community centre, it will benefit all Hornby Island residents.”

“The former Hornby Island Community School was truly the heart of the island’s community,” said Josie Osborne, MLA for Mid Island-Pacific Rim. “After it burned down, I’m proud that our government was quick to provide short-term classrooms for local students so they could keep learning nearby, and I’m thankful the new school will soon give them the long-term, safe and modern learning environment they deserve.”

The new school is scheduled to be ready by September 2022, giving students a modern, new school that better aligns with 21st-century learning. Once complete, the school will safely serve families and support the community for decades to come.

“The daycare students next door take a keen interest in progress and keep the community informed about the big equipment at work. It’s exciting to see the structure take shape knowing our students and community will be back in such a wonderful, safe learning centre one day soon,” Comox Valley Schools board chair Sheila McDonnell said. “The logistics of creating a temporary school and now moving so efficiently with the new building dealt many extra challenges. We commend the entire project team, SD71 staff and contractors for their stellar work.”

Hornby Island residents used the old elementary school throughout the year. The largest facility on the island, it also contained its only gymnasium. The new school will include an expanded gymnasium that will be available for community programming. It will be rebuilt on the same site.

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