Following the recent opening of Campbell River's École Mer-et-montagne elementary, Vancouver Island now has a second francophone school. The École au Cœur-de-l'île has opened in Comox. This $25-million, K-12 school occupies the site of former Village Park Elementary, and will hold up to 320 students, resulting in 160 new jobs.
There will be a neighbourhood learning centre for preschool children, francophone community offices, a full gymnasium with lighting and sound for theatre use, and a performing arts room, also with lighting and sound.
The school was designed to meet Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold standards. It harvests rainwater, providing ground source heat, and utilized reclaimed materials in the building process.
Additionally, the school will offer an international baccalaureate (IB) middle school program. Designed for ages 11-16, the program will help students meet academic challenges, make connections between learning and the real world, and promote critical thinking.