A final farewell to Philip E. Layton school for the blind

Watch: Phillip E. Layton School for the Blind closing party

MONTREAL – Students, parents and staff gathered at Philip E. Layton school for the blind Thursday for the annual end of year party.

But this year, the tradition means the end of an era. It’s the last year the school will be housed in its historic Sherbrooke street site. The school is moving July 1  to the Mackay centre on Decarie.

“This is a very special and emotional end of year party,” explains teacher Sandra Dorfman Stein.

Stein has been at the school for 35 years.

“This is the best place for these students to learn exactly what they need for their future.”

There’s been a lot of controversy over the move with parents and administrators at the Mackay, who say they desperately need renovations to be done in order to accommodate the 40 students from Philip E. Layton.

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Education Minister Yves Bolduc says he’s working with the English Montreal School Board to ensure students from both schools have the space and services they need.

Philip E. Layton was founded back in 1908 by the late NDP leader Jack Layton’s great grandfather.

It’s the only English school for the blind in the province.