Indian and Northern Affairs Canada

Indian and Northern Affairs Canada

July 21, 2009 10:04 ET

Government of Canada Delivers New School for Tobique First Nation in New Brunswick

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - July 21, 2009) - The Government of Canada is helping to build a new school to ensure members of the Tobique First Nation have access to quality learning environments. This investment was made possible through the Government's $33-billion Building Canada Plan (http://www.buildingcanada-chantierscanada.gc.ca/).

"Having access to safe learning environments and a quality education is essential to the future success of First Nations youth, socially and economically," said Mike Allen, Member of Parliament for Tobique-Mactaquac on behalf of the Honourable Chuck Strahl, Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development and Federal Interlocutor for Metis and Non-Status Indians. "Improving educational achievement for Aboriginal peoples is a shared responsibility in which governments, communities, educators, families and students all have a role to play. Our government will continue to make investments such as this to promote long-term improvements in education, and give First Nations students the tools they need to achieve their goals."

Funding from the Government of Canada will support the design and construction of a new kindergarten to grade 8 school for Tobique First Nation. The approximately 2,490 m2 facility will be able to accommodate up to 268 students, providing capacity and facilities for enrolment growth. Construction of the project itself will bring welcome economic benefits to the region.

"I am thrilled beyond words and very thankful to the Government of Canada for responding to what was obviously a crisis in our community," said Stewart Paul, Chief of the Tobique First Nation. "A new school will boost the morale of our entire community and is a key component for enabling us to continue towards self-determination and more importantly, will greatly assist us to retain our Maliseet culture. I am particularly grateful for the efforts of our Member of Parliament, Mike Allen, for successfully achieving this objective."

In Budget 2007, the Government of Canada took steps to augment infrastructure programming across Canada through the creation of the $33-billion Building Canada Plan, including an $8-billion extension to the Gas Tax Fund (GTF). This extension allocates approximately $102 million for school construction in First Nations communities over a three-year period, beginning in 2009-2010 and ending in 2011-2012.

The school investment at Tobique First Nation is one of eight new schools or school renovation projects funded through the Building Canada Plan. These projects are in addition to the 10 new schools and three major school renovation projects already announced this year under Canada's Economic Action Plan.

Project costs will be identified following the competitive tendering process.

This news release and backgrounders are also available on the Internet at: www.ainc-inac.gc.ca.

Contact Information

  • Minister's Office
    Nina Chiarelli
    Press Secretary
    Office of the Honourable Chuck Strahl
    819-997-0002
    or
    Media Relations
    Indian and Northern Affairs Canada
    819-953-1160