London-area school boards getting $16.7M for COVID-19 safety

Children wearing face masks in school. (File photo courtesy of © Can Stock Photo / halfpoint)

The federal and provincial governments are sending over $16 million dollars to two local school boards to help them make schools safer during the pandemic.

On Wednesday, Ontario Education Minister Stephen Lecce and federal Infrastructure Ministe Catherine McKenna announced $656.5 million dollars in funding for school boards across the province to upgrade their infrastructure.

The Thames Valley District School Board will get $10.2 million while the London District Catholic School Board is in line for $6.5 million.

“It is critical that Elgin-Middlesex-London schools, many of them rural and older facilities, receive the necessary infrastructure upgrades to protect student and staff wellbeing and enhance technological capability,” said Elgin Middlesex London MPP Jeff Yurek.

According to the province, the money will help school boards pay for upgrading their ventilation systems, installation of water bottle refilling stations, and the redesign of classrooms to enhance physical distancing.