Ottawa schools receive new funding for air quality, infrastructure improvements during pandemic
FILE - AN empty teacher's desk is pictured at the front of a empty classroom at Mcgee Secondary school in Vancouver on Sept. 5, 2014. (Jonathan Hayward/The Canadian Press)
OTTAWA -- Ottawa's school boards will receive millions of dollars in new funding to improve air quality and safety in elementary and secondary schools during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Ontario and federal governments announced $656.5 million in funding to provide critical infrastructure upgrades.
In a media release, the governments said the majority of funding will support ventilation projects that improve air quality in classrooms. Projects include HVAC renovations to improve air quality, installing water bottle refilling stations and space reconfigurations such as new walls and doors to enhance physical distancing.
The Ottawa Carleton District School Board will receive $25.6 million, the Ottawa Catholic School Board will receive $13.9 million, the Conseil des ecoles catholiques du Centre-Est will receive $8.9 million and the Conseil des ecoles publiques de l'Est de l'Ontario will receive $4 million.
"These projects will improve air quality, install more hand washing stations and support better physical distancing," said Catherine McKenna, Federal Minister of Infrastructure and Communities. "They are part of the federal government's support to help Canadians get through the pandemic safely, create good jobs across the province, and build stronger, more resilient communities."
MPP Jeremy Roberts tweeted that schools in his Ottawa West-Nepean riding will receive money for a variety of projects, including individual room ventilators, HVAC system replacement, washroom renovations and touchless technology.