Province and feds invest hundreds of millions to improve school safety

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

The provincial and federal governments announced $656.5 million dollars in funding today to upgrade schools in Ontario to keep staff and students safe.

The federal government is investing $525.2 million dollars through its COVID-19 Resilience stream and the province is chipping in $131.3 million dollars.

Federal Infrastructure Minister Catherine McKenna says they set up the COVID-19 Resilience stream last year when they recognized people were struggling during the first lockdown.

“We needed to look at what the federal government could do to support students, to support teachers, and of course to support…parents where a lot of the burden falls, in particular on moms,” said McKenna.

The majority of the money will go to improving ventilation systems in schools but there will also be investments in more handwashing stations, doors and walls to enhance physical distancing, and installing water bottle refilling stations.