Modular classrooms at Victoria’s École Willows School that were locally designed and built. Keri Coles/Oak Bay News

School district will look into building its own portables

Business committee recommends investigating viability of in-house construction of ‘learning studios’

Instead of buying portables, Nanaimo school district could leave construction in the hands of its employees.

The district’s business committee unanimously recommended that the school board direct staff to investigate the viability of ‘learning studios,’ which would be built by staff and possibly also Career Technical Centre students as a hands-on educational experience.

The idea isn’t new. Greater Victoria School District has already piloted in-house construction of portables, saying on its website that it required more space and determined the most cost-effective and long-term solution would be a locally designed and built modular space.

Cupe 606 president Rob Zver, whose union brought the idea to trustees, said it could be a “win-win” for the educational side and maintaining CUPE workers.

Another school district built studios with its workforce and he said the portables were of a better standard, built to the way people wanted them, and when the union looked at it, their costs were probably as much if not less than portables that would come in “because of the cost of transporting them and the rest of the stuff that would go with it.”

Trustee Stephanie Higginson said they’re called learning studios because they aren’t the typical portable. She was in one in Victoria and said they are bright, beautiful spaces.

“If this is financially viable or even just a teeny bit more expensive I just really think they are much nicer learning environment,” she said.

Trustee Tania Brzovic called it a great opportunity to put back work for CUPE staff who have faced a lot of cuts in the last few years and a terrific opportunity for CTC students, while trustee Jamie Brennan, pointed out that most of the district’s bandshells were built by CUPE staff and are still standing – “and that was like 25 years ago.”

“This will make us much more flexible, I think, much more … able to respond to sudden increases in population with facilities that are durable and light rather than those mould-infested portables that we sometimes encounter in our district and other districts,” he said.



news@nanaimobulletin.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Summer of our Discontent: homeless camp a contentious issue

City of Nanaimo, tent city going to court this week to settle differences

Application hearing held for Discontent City case

Two-day petition hearing begins July 17

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Enough is enough at Discontent City

I cannot believe that the people of Discontent City even get to have a say, says letter writer

Large suspected ammo found at Cassidy recycling facility

Area businesses voluntarily evacuated

Fires claim boat and travel trailer in Nanaimo

Nanaimo area firefighters come off busy weekend for fires with two fires Monday morning

Nanaimo Concert Band to perform at Maffeo Sutton Park

Group will play marches, swing and show tunes at free evening concert

Silly boats make a splash on Nanaimo seas

Superette wins Nanaimo’s Silly Boat Regatta community fundraising event

Florist announces bid for Nanaimo city council

Jim Turley, former owner of Turley’s Florist, intends to run in fall election

VIDEO: Firefighters putting out brush fire in East Wellington

Fire is in the area of a new development under construction near Shady Mile Way

Trudeau blasts Putin, Russia following Finland summit but stays mum on Trump

Strong words come one day after a controversial summit between Putin and Trump in Finland

Temperature records break across southern B.C. as heat continues

Whistler broke a 70-year-old record high of 32.2 C with a temperature of 32.9 C

Hawaii volcano boat tours continue after ‘lava bomb’ injuries

“An explosion occurred near the shoreline hurling hot lava rocks towards the boat and injuring several passengers.”

Trump returns from summit with Putin to forceful criticism

“Shameful,” ”disgraceful,” ”weak,” were a few of the comments. Makes the U.S. “look like a pushover,” said GOP Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee.

Obama to deliver Mandela address in likely rebuke to Trump

Former U.S. President Barack Obama Monday praised Kenya’s president and opposition leader for working together but said this East African country must do more to end corruption.

Most Read