WESTVILLE – The Town of Westville didn’t want to accept the keys to Highland Consolidated Middle School, but they were left anyways.
© ADAM MACINNIS - THE NEWS
Chignecto-Central Regional School Board presented the keys to town CAO Kelly Rice last Thursday, stating that the building was now under the protection of the town. Rice declined the keys and plans to the building, stating that the town wasn’t planning on taking the building back unless it was in the shape they gave it to CCRSB in.
After a walk-through last week that was far from the case according to Rice, who said the condition of the school was “deplorable.”
“We had sent a letter to the school board stating that we wouldn’t accept responsibility for Highland Consolidated Middle School until such a time as the premises were brought up to the standards under the act,” she said. “My letter was responded to by the superintendent stating that our letter had been forwarded to the operations committee and that we would be hearing from them. The next correspondence was two hours after they dropped off the keys and the drawings. Basically they told us as of noon on May 22 they would no longer be responsible.”
The school board had cancelled the insurance, power and security systems as of noon last Thursday according to Rice. Because of this the town has since put insurance on the building, had town public works employees secure the building and have arranged for an inspection by an engineer next week.
They have also been in touch with the minister of education and premier’s office, giving them all the information about the correspondence with the school board.
“The way the school board has acted is just beyond belief,” said councilor Lynn MacDonald. “There was a directive that came from the province saying to stop the school review process and they were the only school board that didn’t. They went ahead with it and chose to close this school.”
More to come.