The brand-new Waterford Valley High School in St. John's is ready to open its doors.
The new school replaces the recently closed Booth Memorial High School and Bishops College.
The $38-million project includes Wi-Fi equipped classrooms, a fitness centre, a band room and a gymnasium that includes a performance stage.
Darrin Pike, chief executive officer of the English School District, gave a tour of the new school to Premier Paul Davis, cabinet ministers, and members of the community Thursday afternoon.
"This is a state-of-the-art facility and students will be so excited to come here." said school principal Bridget Ricketts
"The technology, the classrooms, the size of the building, the opportunities that they will have here, it will just be fabulous,"
The high school will also include a healthy kitchen and cafeteria.
The school will ditch deep-fried foods in favour of healthier fare.
Concerns over pedestrian safety
However, concerns have been raised that the close proximity to the Village Mall will lead to students crossing busy Topsail Road at lunchtime seeking less healthy options.
Last year, a student at Bishops College was fatally struck by a car while crossing the same street.
The school plans to emphasize pedestrian safety to students when class is back in session.
The first bell rings at Waterford Valley High next week.
A teacher who had a tremendous impact on my life was Jerry Pryor, who taught me French from 1984-1986 in Windsor, NL at W. Bramwell Booth Memorial High School.
Mr. Pryor always made me feel that I was capable of doing anything with my life and that was the foundation on which my self confidence was built.
I still carry a favorite memory of him with me every time I sign my name. At some point during high school, I stopped going by the name “Debbie” and preferred to be called “Deb.” Every time I submitted a paper, test or assignment to Mr. Pryor, I would write my name on it as “Deb.” And every single time I got it back, he would have added “bie” to the end in red pen. He would tell me “Life is too short, don’t be in a hurry to grow up Debbie.”
Tragically, Mr. Pryor and his wife were killed in a motorcycle accident on August 31, 2015. Ironically, I had searched him on Facebook just a couple weeks before that.
I don’t know if he had ever known how much of an impact he had on me as a teenager . . . I like to think he did.