Thanks to very cooperative weather the construction and expansion of Hillside Public School is progressing and the school is expected to open on schedule this September with around 550 students for the start of the school year.
All onsite demolition work has been completed and services such as water, electricity, gas, site drainage, and water retention are in place.
There is a newly laid soccer field with grass and a sprinkler system. The parking lot has been laid with a base layer of asphalt with a final layer to be added before September.
As for the inside, “Construction of the building addition and internal renovation work is on schedule and progressing well,” says Wendy Dowling, Superintendent of Education – Early Years at the Peel District School Board.
The ground level of that new addition at the back is where the new kindergarten classrooms will be.
When Hillside Public School opens its doors in September, the staff, administration, students and parents of Willow Glen, Elmcrest and Hillside Middle Schools will be united into a single community.
Dowling says that when these three schools come together it won’t be their first time they’ve interacted since staff and students from the schools have already had special events together.
There are transition committees in place made of teachers, parents and administration and there has been interest expressed by them to host an Open House so that the Park Royal community can see the changes to a building that has long been a member of the community.
At the end of this school year both Willow Glen and Elmcrest Public schools will close their doors.
Willow Glen Public School to be demolished
The agreement of Purchase and Sale of the site between the Peel District School Board and the City of Mississauga states that the school board will be demolishing the school building and grading and sodding the site in the interim until the site is developed by the city.
No demolition dates have been finalized, but it is expected to happen over the summer months.
In December of 2016 the City of Mississauga will take over ownership of the entire Willow Glen property. The general vision of the site is for up to 10 single family detached homes along the frontages of Epton and Utley with a community park on the remainder of the site.
“Towards the end of the year, the City will begin exploring options for the residential lot development and park facilities in greater detail, with the intent of giving the public another update in the first half of 2017,” says Ward 2 City Councilor Karen Ras.
There will be additional community input sought regarding the final proposal for the site.
Fate of Elmcrest Public School unknown
As for Elmcrest, there has been no decision as to when the disposition of the property will occur. There are detailed steps the Peel District School Board will follow to decide what to do with the property.
“Right now we are not making plans because we need to see even within our own organization what our needs are,” says Dowling.
Any decision about the Elmcrest property will not occur until after the three schools are combined.
“Our priority is the current students Elmcrest, Willow Glen, and Hillside,” says Downling, “We want to ensure that we have a successful move. We are not putting energy right now into what to do about the property.”