Following the major school change consultations launched last May, the Lester B. Pearson School Board (LBPSB) council of commissioners has reached what it qualified as a “tough decision.”
At a public council meeting on Tuesday night, councillors unanimously voted on eight resolutions regarding the future of Beurling Academy, Lakeside Academy, Lindsay Place High School and St. Thomas High School as well as Sources Adult & Career Centre (SACC), Place Cartier Adult Education Centre and Place Cartier’s Allancroft annex.
As of September 2021, St. Thomas High School will move into the building that currently houses Lindsay Place High School.
The relocation means Lindsay Place High School as it is currently known will be closed. Students will be able to complete their education in the current building but under the St. Thomas name, LBPSB chair Noel Burke explained on Tuesday night.
The move will take place over an 18-month period, which means that “everything remains the same for the next school year,” Burke emphasized.
The news had some students who attended Tuesday’s meeting holding back tears.
“I’m really disappointed,” said Serena Masciotra, a graduating student at St. Thomas.
“I see other students at Lindsay Place, and they’re disappointed and heartbroken that their school is going to be closed.”
As for Beurling and Lakeside academies, the council endorsed the education project revision and innovative educational plans proposed by each school.
Both establishments will have to table a comprehensive plan by May 2020 and provide semi-annual reports on the implementation of these projects until 2023.
The resolutions also include the consolidation of Place Cartier Adult Education Centre and SACC, which will be located in the current St. Thomas High School building.
Burke said he was heartbroken by the outcome but said decisions had been made in the interest of a larger system.
The board launched the major school change initiative back in May in order to consolidate its school network, saying it faces a steady decline in enrolment and several LBPSB schools are not completely full.