If construction goes along as scheduled at Bonnyville Centralized High School, students would return to the school in the second semester of the 2020-21 school year, said Northern Lights Public Schools on Friday.
The entire modernization project will not be completed at that time, but the school board expects the majority of the work on the west side of the school will be done.
Construction will then continue on the east portion of the school after students have returned and will be phased in a manner that minimizes disruption to instruction and places an emphasis on the safety of students and staff, NLPS said in the project update.
They expect students to return to the Centennial Centre if and when classes resume with the current COVID-19 pandemic.
Abatement and demolition work on the Lyle Victor Albert Centre to build a new gymnasium began on Friday and is expected to continue for approximately 90 days.
“When classes resume, students will return to the Centennial Centre. Classes are currently cancelled indefinitely and we do not yet have any indication of when they may resume.
“We recognize that the timeline for students being at the Centennial Centre is now longer than what everyone had originally expected and we appreciate that this has created some anxiety for our students, parents and staff,” NLPS said.
“Unfortunately, circumstances beyond our control led to unanticipated delays in the start of the project. We are hopeful that now that the contractor is on-site and work is underway, the project will proceed with minimal delay and we can start looking forward to the programming that can be offered once the modernization is complete.”
Alberta Infrastructure awarded the contract for the project to Jen-Col Construction out of Acheson on March 11, although local contractors were upset they were shut out of final bidding for the tender.
BCHS operations moved to the Centennial Centre at the beginning of the 2019-20 school year in anticipation of construction beginning last fall.
The modernization was approved by the province in 2017.