WECDSB Trustee Fulvio Valentinis shows media the land on McDougall Street being purchased for a new Catholic Central High School, June 14, 2019. Photo by Mark Brown/Blackburn News.

UPDATE: Government to fund land for a new CCHS

Ontario’s Minister of Education has announced funding for a new Catholic Central High School in Windsor.

Lisa Thompson made the announcement on Friday morning.

“We’re protecting what matters most by providing students and families with better schools for better learning,” she said in a release.

The province has agreed to provide $7 million to help the Windsor Essex Catholic District School Board buy 11-acres of land at 2465 McDougall St. The site is roughly bounded by McDougall, the railway tracks and Ouellette Avenue, with businesses on the south end of the property. The site is roughly a kilometre away from the current CCHS on Tecumseh Road East and Mercer Street.

WECDSB Trustee Fulvio Valentinis showed the site to reporters on Friday afternoon. He said the process has been a long time in the making and he is thrilled to see things coming together.

“The original announcement was made over five years ago when then-Cabinet minister Theresa Piruzza had announced it,” said Valentinis. “The funding was actually finalized by the province three years ago. So we’d been in discussions and hoping and waiting to move forward on this.”

While the design has not been worked out yet, Valentinis said he expects the new CCHS to be state-of-the-art with all the amenities of a modern high school, complete with new athletic facilities, computer and science labs, music rehearsal spaces and so forth.

The board was going to take over the site of Windsor Arena but pulled the application with the city last month. The city has since announced that the Windsor Arena site is now up for sale. The board also said it had submitted a proposal for a parcel of land downtown that was twice the size.

The $26 million new school will have room for 900 Grade 9 to Grade 12 students and could be open sooner than people think, according to Valentinis.

“It’ll be much, much sooner than later,” said Valentinis. “The beauty of this site is that it’s a clean site. We’re not renovating a heritage building, we’re not doing an add-on. We’re starting clean and fresh.”

-With files from Mark Brown

Catholic Central High School in Windsor. (Photo by Adelle Loiselle)

Catholic Central High School in Windsor. (Photo by Adelle Loiselle)