Indian and Northern Affairs Canada

Indian and Northern Affairs Canada

March 21, 2009 13:45 ET

Canada's Economic Action Plan Delivers New School for Penticton First Nation in B.C.

PENTICTON, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - March 21, 2009) - Members of the Penticton First Nation will benefit from a new school, thanks to the Government of Canada's Economic Action Plan (http://www.budget.gc.ca/2009/home-accueil-eng.asp).

The Honourable Stockwell Day, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, on behalf of the Honourable Chuck Strahl, Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development and Federal Interlocutor for Metis and Non-Status Indians, today announced funding for a new school for Penticton First Nation.

"Education is an essential component in improving the quality of life of First Nations people," said Minister Day. "Our government is committed to working with First Nation communities to ensure they have safe and healthy educational facilities that contribute to positive learning experiences for First Nation students."

This project is part of the $200 million for new schools and major renovations included in the $1.4 billion investment for Aboriginal peoples under the Economic Action Plan. The Penticton school will integrate Kindergarten to Grade 6 students who are currently attending off-reserve provincial schools and students who are attending classes in on-reserve portables. The design of the school will include various green initiatives such as a geothermal heating system. Projected school enrolment is about 90 full-time students, with adult learning taking place in the evenings.

"The Penticton Indian Band is very grateful for this funding from the Federal Government," stated Chief Jonathan Kruger. "It has been a long journey for our community to get to this point and we are pleased it's finally becoming a reality." Penticton Indian Band Councillor Joseph Pierre added, "The funding was highly anticipated and we are very pleased with the outcome."

The Government of Canada is taking action to improve the lives of First Nations and stimulate economic growth in First Nation communities through targeted investments in infrastructure. Investments in school infrastructure projects will help ensure First Nation students have a strong and productive educational experience, which starts with access to quality infrastructure that is conducive to learning.

Project costs will be identified following the competitive tendering process.

This news release is also available on the Internet at: inac-ainc.gc.ca

Backgrounders on First Nations Infrastructure and Capital Facilities and Maintenance Program are also available on the Internet at: inac-ainc.gc.ca

Contact Information

  • Indian and Northern Affairs Canada
    Media Relations
    819-953-1160
    or
    Office of the Honourable Chuck Strahl
    Ted Yeomans
    819-997-0002