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  • News
  • July 01, 2016

Investing $18 Million to Improve Local Schools

Province Making Historic School Infrastructure Investment

Ontario is investing an additional $18 million in Barrie, Simcoe County and Muskoka over the next two years to repair and renew schools for a total investment of $53 million to ensure that they continue to be safe and modern places for students to learn. 

The funding will enable the Simcoe County District School Board ($15 million) and the Simcoe Muskoka Catholic District School Board ($3 million) to repair roofs, update HVAC units and modernize electrical and plumbing systems. It will also significantly improve more visible elements of schools th at impact students’ learning and well-being, including flooring, walls, ceilings, playing fields and more.

The province is investing and additional $1.1 billion in school infrastructure across the province, which builds on $1.6 billion in existing funding that has been allocated for repairs and renewals over the next two school years, for a total of $2.7 billion.

This investment in school repair and renewal in Barrie, Simcoe County and Muskoka is part of the largest investment in public infrastructure in the province's history — about $160 billion over 12 years, which is supporting 110,000 jobs every year across the province, with projects such as roads, bridges, transit systems, schools and hospitals.

Giving students the best possible learning environment is part of the government’s plan to build Ontario up and deliver on its number one priority — growing the economy and creating jobs. The four-part plan includes investing in talent and skills, including helping more people get and create the jobs of the future by expanding access to high-quality college and university education. The plan is making the largest infrastructure investment in hospitals, schools, roads, bridges and transit in Ontario’s history  and is investing in a low-carbon economy driven by innovative, high-growth, export-oriented businesses. In addition, the plan is helping working Ontarians achieve a more secure retirement.


“Our government continues to support Barrie students with significant investments in better schools for better learning. This is an important investment for towards local student achievement and well-being, and a boost for our local economy.”

— Ann Hoggarth, MPP for Barrie

“Investing in our schools is one of the most important infrastructure investments we can make for nearly two million students in Ontario. Our government believes in better buildings for better learning and well-being. Making sure schools across the province are in a state of good repair is an essential part of supporting student achievement. The investment announced today is great news for students, educators, communities, and the economy.”

— Mitzie Hunter, Minister of Education

“The additional funding is welcomed news.  We’re committed to using public resources responsibly. We’ve had to make difficult decisions at times. We’ve consolidated or closed underused or aging buildings. We’ve also invested in retrofits and ongoing maintenance. Our goal is always to provide students with the best facilities possible. This funding will help us continue to do that.”

— Peter Beacock, Chair of the Simcoe County District School Board

“We are very pleased to receive this unexpected facilities funding, which we will begin to use this summer to make improvements in schools throughout our board. It is incredibly important to make continuous improvements to our facilities so that our students are provided with optimal learning conditions. We will use this funding to improve accessibility, create safer environments and make necessary upgrades and retrofits to our buildings and properties.”

— Brian Beal, Director of Education for the Simcoe Muskoka Catholic District School Board


  • This funding is being allocated to school boards in proportion to their renewal needs. Information about school board allocations will be available in the coming weeks. To support transparency in this historic investment, the province will publicly post detailed information regarding the condition and renewal needs of each of Ontario’s 4,900 public schools.
  • This funding represents an increase in funding for elementary and secondary school renewal of $500 million for the 2015-16 school year and $575 million for the 2016-17 school year.
  • This new funding addresses the Auditor General of Ontario’s recommendations in 2015 to increase investment in school renewal to 2.5 per cent of schools’ replacement value and to direct two-thirds of infrastructure investment in schools to renewal over new construction.   
  • Since 2003, the province has invested more than $14 billion in school infrastructure, including nearly 760 new schools and more than 735 additions and renovations.
  • The province is providing school boards with more than $12 billion over 10 years to help build new schools in areas of high growth, improve the condition of existing schools and invest in projects to reduce surplus space through school consolidations.


Achieving Excellence: A Renewed Vision for Education in Ontario

Capital investments in education

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