A new skilled trades centre will offer more hands-on learning and academic opportunities for students at Cole Harbour District High School.
Premier Stephen McNeil and Education and Early Childhood Development Minister Karen Casey, officially opened the new centre today, Oct. 31.
"Today is about connecting students with workforce opportunities," said Premier McNeil. "This skilled trades centre is an investment in the future of our students and will provide them with first-hand experience that is second to none in a variety of trades."
Skilled trades centres have been specifically designed by educators, trades people and members of industry. Cole Harbour District High School's centre features 6,500 square feet of instructional space.
"Students in Cole Harbour have more learning opportunities available to them than ever before with the addition of this state-of-the-art skilled trades centre," said Ms. Casey. "In this centre, students work on real projects using real tools of the trades and that makes a big difference for those preparing to enter the workforce."
With the new centre, Cole Harbour students can access courses such as:
-- Skilled Trades 10, which gives an overview of all trades and focuses on using basic hand tools
-- Construction Trades 11, which helps students develop, and put into use, skills essential to construction trades
-- additional courses, expected to be added next year
"Skilled trades is a great opportunity for me because I know the hours that I spend in class are going towards my future career," said Grade 10 student Breanna Young. "I know that what I am learning, I am going to use later in life."
The skilled trades centre at Cole Harbour District High School is part of an overall provincial investment of $10 million in the school.
Renovations are expected to be completed by January and also include a new, larger gymnasium with a healthy living classroom, a new guidance centre, learning common, cafeteria, music room, and textile and nutrition room.
The Halifax Regional Municipality contributed $630,000 towards the gymnasium construction.
"The development of the skilled trades program is a throwback to education and aesthetic learning, which has meaning for students of today just as it did back in the day," said Cole Harbour principal Kenneth Fells. "Hands on, attaining goals, and seeing success right away are what education should be about. This is learning essentials."
There are 11 skilled trades centres in school boards across the province. For more information, visit http://novascotia.ca/education