New secondary school officially opens in Niagara area

By

Published September 5, 2023 at 4:11 pm

After lengthy delays brought on by the COVID-19 crisis, a new secondary school has opened and is welcoming students for the 2023/2024 school year. 

West Niagara Secondary School, located in the Beamsville community in Lincoln, opened its doors to students on Sept. 5. 

In March, the District School Board of Niagara (DSBN) confirmed that the school would be open in the fall of 2023. 

The school board initially said it was anticipating a September 2022 opening, but delays beset the completion of the new building for another year.

In March 2022, the board said continued delays on the construction of the new school meant that students in Grimsby Secondary School and Beamsville District Secondary School would stay put for another school year.

“Our goal has always been to open the doors of what we know will be an exceptional, beautiful new school, in September 2022,” said Warren Hoshizaki, DSBN Director of Education, in a release to parents last year.

“However, due to the impacts of the global pandemic, and the issues and delays it caused, the West Niagara Secondary School building will not be ready to open by September 2022. When we have a clearer projection of when the building will be completed, we will share an update.”

For the 2022-23 school year, the DSBN decided that students in the existing Grimsby and Beamsville high schools would enrol as West Niagara Secondary School students, despite the fact they physically never left their schools.

Previously, DSBN communications officer Carolyn LoConte told inniagararegion.com that “while the new school building has not yet opened its doors, West Niagara Secondary School is actually open. The school opened in September 2022, with students being officially enrolled as the West Niagara Wolfpack in September 2022. While the school building isn’t ready yet, the school itself is open.”

The new high school was controversial from the outset. Back in March 2017, some area parents expressed outrage when the DSBN voted in favour of a motion to close three high schools in order to create the new West Niagara Secondary School.

According to an article posted on the school’s official website in April, the new building features new technology, an artificial turf field with a running track, jump pit and grass field, a 750-seat theatre, a greenhouse, a fitness centre and more. 

– With files from Don Redmond

INsauga's Editorial Standards and Policies advertising