›› Tania Wegwitz
September usually brings with it the return to old routines after the summer. But for families and staff at George Jay Elementary, this September has also brought many new things as they returned to the newly renovated and seismically upgraded school.

The refurbished school looks amazing inside, with fresh paint, whiteboards, and blinds, as well as new interior doors, windows and skylights that make it feel light and open. When asked about the new school, my son’s comment was “It’s soooo beautiful!”

In addition to revamped classrooms, office, music room, and school kitchen, the changes have also turned one room into “The Maker Space.” This free-form place is filled with materials, recycled objects and tables where students can build things and conduct science experiments together.

The changes also make it easier for the community to join the school; not only has the school’s StrongStart Program room been refreshed, but a separate family washroom with a change table has been added. Preschool-aged children and their families are welcome to participate in this early learning program from 8:45am to 11:45am.

The community will also notice changes outside the school, with a revitalized heritage school sign and cornice facing Chambers Street, soaring new covered entranceway on Princess Avenue, and a completed nature playground with logs and rocks to scramble over.

Much thanks to School District #61 staff and Trustees and our fantastic George Jay staff for enabling all these changes to happen. September brings a fresh start indeed. For more info on George Jay Elementary and its programs, call 250-385-3381 or visit georgejay.sd61.bc.ca.