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New washrooms for Fort Frances High School

By Randy Thoms Jun 12, 2023 | 9:44 PM

Washrooms designs like this one at Northern Lakes School in Atikokan will also be at Fort Frances High School in the near future. Photo supplied by Rainy River District School Board

There is going to be a new look to the washrooms at Fort Frances High School.

Rainy River District School Board’s Heather Campbell says the existing ones are being opened up and replaced with a Multiple Single Use or Gender Neutral design.

“What that really means is that there will be privacy floor-to-ceiling walls with lockable full doors. And that will certainly be welcome for students who prefer a bit more privacy when using a washroom. And certainly, it will also help to open up the washroom space as far as where your hands are washed so there isn’t congregation,” says Campbell.

Each washroom area will include a general hand washing area, which is open to the hallway and blocked by a partition for added privacy.

There will also be an accessible washroom in each area.

The only accessible washroom at the high school is located on the main floor.

Campbell says the same design was incorporated at the new Northern Lakes K-12 School in Atikokan.

“This design is not just specific to our board. It’s being used in many boards across northwestern and northern Ontario. We’ve worked with an architectural firm that’s designed schools and high schools across Ontario and has been using this design over and over again because schools and school boards see it as one that welcomes all students, respects all gender identities, and also provides a sense of greater privacy and security for students and for the school.”

Campbell says they are also hoping the new look will resolve some of the issues of vandalism seen in the washrooms.
The work will take place soon, but because of the extent of the project, the board is taking a phased approach, installing one washroom area at a time.
It is also taking place with other improvements.

They include:

• Complete replacement of all remaining roof areas installed prior to 1999, as well as maintenance and repair of select roofing areas
• Replacement of First Floor Hallway Flooring
• Replacement of Interior Door Hardware, as well as replacement of select classroom doors
• West Bus Lane Exterior Entrance sidewalk replacement so all entrances are wheelchair accessible
• Parking Lot Patching and Repair to extend the life of existing asphalt
• Some Exterior Brick Repair and Maintenance
• First and Second Floor Central and First Floor Northwest Washroom renovations.

“We’ve already installed new boilers, new fire alarm system, and of course, as part of the COVID funding we received from the government, both federal and provincial, we’ve installed energy recovery ventilators to improve the fresh air intake.”

Supplied by Rainy River District School Board


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