New school construction process:
· Initial funding is scheduled for 2014/15. Typically the funding is divvied up over three or more years and spent as follows: planning/design, construction, and warranty period.
· The project is funded by the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development (DEECD) and managed by the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal’s (DTIR) project management team. DEECD establishes the space requirements (eg. number of classrooms, specialty program spaces, administrative space, gym size, etc.) based on current enrollment and application of the N.S. Public School Program space requirements. HRSB will talk with HRM about their desire or not to enhance the project using HRM money. This could include an enlarged gymnasium or other enhanced space as informed by HRM’s needs within the community.
· The site selection process is the first step within the planning stage and is led by HRSB staff. Ultimately it is a process that will see involvement by the Principal, SACs, Operations and School Administration, HRM, DTIR, and DEECD. Recommendations for site selection, a standard feature in the new construction process, are presented to the Governing Board. If accepted they are forwarded to DEECD for assessment by DTIR. Final approval rests with the Minister of EECD.
· Once a site has been selected and approved by the Minister, a School Steering Team (SST) is established that provides input into the DTIR design team on program delivery and space design requirements. The SST is chaired by HRSB staff and typically includes: Operations, School Administration, and Program staff; Principal and Vice-Principal; SAC chairs; HRM; DEECD; and DTIR as well as the design consultant. Typically there is not representation by elected representatives (MLA, Board Member, or Councillor) at this stage in the process but they have attended on occasion. The SST does not have decision making authority but provides input for consideration by the design team.
· Finally the conceptual design is reviewed with the SST for feedback and DTIR completes the detailed design and construction documents. Normally the SST function is complete once the project has achieved final design and moves to the construction tender process.