New Behchokǫ̀ school coming in 2025 at the earliest

Jackson Lafferty, Monfwi MLA, once again brought up the issue of a new school for Behchokǫ̀.

Behchokǫ̀ residents will need to wait until 2025 for a new school in their community — and that’s if “everything goes smooth.”

R.J. Simpson, minister of Education, Culture and Employment (ECE), said the project hinges on federal funding.

But that work is on hold as the territorial government and Tłı̨chǫ Government work out the details of an infrastructure agreement announced last August.

Jackson Lafferty, Monfwi MLA, said that by the time 2025 comes around it’s “going to be well over 30 years since the last renovation, and that school is deteriorating as we speak.”

Lafferty also suggested that ECE send a survey to Behchokǫ̀ residents for input on where to build the new school.

According to Simpson, Tłı̨chǫ leadership have told him they want to build the new structure in Rae. He added that much of his department’s engagement with community members will come once a location is picked.

“There is a lot of community engagement about what that school should look like, right down to the materials that are used,” he said. “Schools are very personal to communities, and so we always want to final product to reflect community desires in that sense.”

But, again, that conversation is still years away as federal government support remains a large question mark.

About the Author

Francis Tessier-Burns
Francis has been a general news reporter with CKLB since January 2019. Originally from rural Ontario, he first came to the NWT in 2016 as an intern with Up Here magazine and fell in love with the North. In his time with CKLB, he's had the immense pleasure and honour of learning about northern Indigenous cultures. Otherwise, you can find him hanging around the Legislative Assembly. If you have a story or want to chat, reach out to francis@cklbradio.com