Friday, March 3, 2017

Jennifer Rice renews call for replacement of Prince Rupert Middle School

MLA Rice raising issues related
to PRMS in the legislature on
Thursday morning
The call for the replacement of Prince Rupert Middle School once again was heard on the floor of the British Columbia Legislature, as North Coast MLA Jennifer Rice expanded on her recent comments and concerns when it comes to the SD52 facility on Ninth Avenue West on the centre-west side of the city.

As part of the Thursday morning session of the Legislature, Ms. Rice outlined the existing conditions that make for the current state of the building, asking Education Minister Mike Bernier as to the progress of a request from the School District for a replacement building.

Calling on a number of themes that she had noted last week as part of her Throne Speech response, Ms. Rice explored a number of areas of concern to her when it comes to the deteriorating status of the existing building in Prince Rupert.

Noting for the Legislature that the aging structure has a number of areas that need attention; including the need for asbestos removal, lead in the drinking water, basement flooding issues and the need for a roof replacement.

All of which go along with the actual site of the building, which sits atop an old landfill site and provides for its own range of health concerns

Of particular note for the MLA on that theme, were concerns related to fumes from the dumpsite and the nature of the failing infrastructure of the building that the NDP MLA outlined are part of the daily routine for students and teachers .

"When can parent's, teachers and children in Prince Rupert expect to see these atrocious health and safety matters addressed, and when can they see a much, much needed middle school"

The Education Minister turned aside some of her comments related to the health concerns, noting that the Provincial Health officer had noted that there have been no adverse effects on students across British Columbia, adding that the province has been working with School Districts across the province including the one in Prince Rupert to address any upgrades that may be required.

Mr. Bernier did not however, offer up any indication as to where Prince Rupert Middle School may be when it comes to the province's plans for replacement.

The transcript of the exchange can be found from the Legislature Hansard here at the 1100 mark.

You can review the statements from both Ms. Rice and Education Minister Bernier below.

More notes on the MLA's work in the Legislature can be explored on our archive page.

Further background on School District 52, including its work towards a replacement for the prince Rupert Middle School can be found on our archive page here.

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