The Lower Similkameen Indian Band is set to begin construction of a new permanent school facility.
The LSIB announced the groundbreaking for the Ntámłqən Snm̓aʔm̓áyaʔtn Band School, which has been located in temporary portable units for the last two decades.
The new 1,145 square-metre school will provide space not only for the existing elementary and early education programs, but space to grow to meet the future growth of the community.
“Education is our best investment, and this new school will enable us to better serve students and families in the community and ensure that our children have the best possible environment to learn, grow and strive for academic excellence for generations to come,” said Chief Keith Crow of the LSIB.
In addition to the education spaces, the new school facility will include space for the LSIB’s education administration.
The school has been open to students from junior kindergarten up to Grade 7 and to both Indigenous and non-Indigenous children in the surrounding area.
In addition to the BC Curriculum, the school provides Syilx language and cultural studies and has a resident Elder.
Indigenous Services Canada and the Ministry of Children and Families have contributed to the LSIB’s plan and construction of the permanent school facility, a project that has been in the works for the last decade.
“Childcare and education is a key component of our community infrastructure and this new build will improve access to high-quality early learning and cultural programs. For our students, this is a very good day,” said LSIB community education director Marion Louie.
Groundbreaking for the facility will take place on Friday, Sept. 8, with construction beginning the next week.
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