The Ford government is putting $550 million towards building and upgrading schools they say will deliver modern, state-of-the-art classrooms and licensed child care spaces, according to a press release issued on Tuesday.
The Ontario government will be investing $550 million to build 20 new schools and eight permanent school additions across the province in 2020-2021. These projects will create 16,000 new student learning spaces and 870 new licensed child care spaces as part of the government's ongoing efforts to improve and build schools.
Premier Doug Ford said this investment will help Ontario's education system.
"Our government is doing everything possible to ensure our students can achieve lifelong success," said Ford. "That's why we made a significant commitment to fix our schools and ensure students and staff have access to the best classrooms, with features like modern ventilation systems and high-speed Internet access."
Ford said during construction, these projects will create hundreds of jobs and contribute to Ontario's economic recovery.
Minister of Education Stephen Lecce said this investment shows the Ontario government is committed to making the education system better.
"This government firmly believes that all children deserve to learn in state-of-the-art, modern, technologically connected and accessible schools," said Lecce.
"We will continue to take action to ensure students are safe today and well into the future by approving more new school buildings and permanent additions, and increasing access to child care for working parents."
The Ford government is investing more than $12 billion in capital grants over 10 years, including $500 million for 2019-2020 and the $550 million for 2020-2021. They will work with other school board partners to identify other priority large-scale school-based capital projects.
This announcement builds on the Ontario government's up to $1 billion commitment over five years to create up to 30,000 new child care spaces, including up to 10,000 spaces in schools.
School boards with successful projects will be notified by the Ministry of Education by Oct. 30.
The Ministry of Education is also investing $1.4 billion in renewal funding, which continues to meet the recommended funding level set by the Auditor General of Ontario to preserve the condition of Ontario's school facilities.