New Woodstock School - Questions and Comments

Questions, comments and responses will be posted here when they become available. Please subscribe to the page to be notified of updates.


Comment 20: Most of the schools in Woodstock are overcrowded. Is there any accelerated process that TVDSB and City of Woodstock can use to get this school ready faster? Can you also provide a timeline?

Response 20: TVDSB is actively monitoring enrolment growth throughout the City of Woodstock. The Capital Priorities Program requires school boards in Ontario to go through the Ministry of Education Capital Approval Process. As of January 11, 2023, TVDSB has received approvals for floor plans and are currently in the design phase. We will be updating the school community once we move further along the Capital Approval Process and are able to better understand construction timelines. In the meantime, be sure to subscribe to the main page for any updates.


Comment 19: How will 600+ students safely use the ramps/stairs to access the yard in all weather conditions? (Particularly in wet/snowy/icy conditions.) These features seem to have the potential for bottle necking and conflict to occur in the rush to get outside.

Response 19: The site requires us to accommodate a grade change, a ramp and access stairs are required to access the upper play area. Supervision and access into this area were reviewed by the Design Committee. As a result, four access points were proposed: two ramps, and two stairs. Options like split recesses, alternate designated play areas by age or other alternatives can also be explored by school staff and are often very successful in alleviating congestion.


Comment 18: It seems like the proposed space for the addition to the school would block off some of the tarmac from being used for recess. Is the school able to be designed with the addition going in a space to allow for the biggest yard possible (i.e. at the far end of the tarmac, closest to the front of the school).

Response 18: The Design Committee reviewed multiple design options with the architect. The proposed addition in its current configuration was determined to be the best location.


Comment 17: How come a majority of the classrooms are upstairs? There seems to be a significant distance from where administration and the Learning Support Offices are located to where the students are that may need extra assistance. Is there just not enough land at this school site to accommodate more ground level classrooms?

Response 17: The Design Vommittee reviewed the distribution of classrooms throughout the building, guided by the Ministry of Education space template. A balanced approach was achieved by locating learning support rooms on the second floor while being able to maintain amenities on the main floor such as the gymnasium and the library learning commons. School support staff including administration are rarely in offices, but in classrooms and learning spaces throughout the day. The main floor entrances for early years are very successful to help with safety and access, so they are prioritized on the main level.


Comment 16: How come the offices for the childcare centre aren't by the entrance for the childcare, so administration staff can see all visitors/parents entering the site?

Response 16: The Consolidated Municipal Service Manager was involved during the Design Committee process and noted a desire to be able to see childcare activity upon entry. Additional controlled access will be part of the design for childcare centre staff to monitor visitors/parents.


Comment 15: Are the student cubbies in the hallway or in the classrooms?

Response 15: Student cubbies for Kindergarten classrooms are located within classrooms that provide direct access to exterior play areas. For all other classrooms student cubbies are located in the hallway. This design for early years helps us to supervise students when getting dressed or keeping them organized. This is part of the routine of the program to teach them to independently complete these activities.


Comment 14: What kind of storage and sinks are available in each classroom? How many students is each classroom meant to accommodate? How many storage locations, staff work spaces, staff washrooms are in the school?

Response 14: Each classroom contains built-in millwork with a sink. Each classroom is loaded with 23 students and Kindergarten classrooms at 26; however, actual number of students in each classroom will vary based on collective bargaining student caps. Storage locations, staff work spaces, and staff washrooms are labelled in the presentation drawings please see “Plans and Renderings” on our New Woodstock School webpage.


Comment 13: I saw the incorporation of elements from the local conservation into the school design which was great. Will there be elements of the design reflecting the diverse cultures in the surrounding community? For example: language, spiritual, equipment/facilities for cultural sports and dance?

Response 13: The architect has incorporated the local conservation into the school design to integrate the building into its built environment. The school is largely a blank canvas and the incorporation of more specific community elements will be developed as the school community comes together and utilizes the school space.


Comment 12: How big is the yard? Can it accommodate 600+ students? What landscaping/yard components will the school board provide versus what will parent Council need to fundraise for?

Response 12: The design balances the different elements required to build a new school such as: soccer field, hardplay, kindergarten play, childcare exterior play areas and parking. The funding provided by the Ministry will include all soft landscaping and hard landscaping. Playground equipment or outdoor classrooms will need to be fundraised or funded at a later point.


Comment 11: Will the double gym hold 600+ students and community guests/family members for events? How often would students get physical education time in the gymnasium when there are all of the potential portables on the site? Are the two gym spaces enough to accommodate all of the potential students at this site? Will the divider in the gym be soundproofed to allow both classes to adequately use their side of the gym/hear the teacher giving directions while the other half of the gym is being used?

Response 11: The double gym would be able to accommodate the students. Physical education time would be distributed amongst the two gyms as required to provide the appropriate amount of time for students. We are currently in the design phase and reviewing gym divider options. There are always options of multiple grade assemblies if parents attend, and this is something the school can easily manage through scheduling. Most schools this population have only a single gym and this particular design will assist in the concerns raised above.


Comment 10: Are there enough washrooms in the school to accommodate all of the potential portables/ addition to the school? Enough staff washrooms? Where will the water fountains be located?

Response 10: The number of washrooms would satisfy Ontario Building Code requirements for the number of portables that are shown on the drawings. Portables are shown on the drawings in the event that they are required to temporarily accommodate growth. Water fountains will be designed as we move forward with the process but are typically located throughout the building in front of washrooms, gyms and the library.


Comment 9: What is the main intersection this school will be near?

Response 9: TVDSB is in negotiations with a developer in order to secure a school site within the Havelock Corners subdivision in north Woodstock. The site we’re working to acquire is located south of Oxford Road No. 17 and east of Queenston Boulevard.


Comment 8: Are there any plans for a new high school in Woodstock as well?

Response 8: There are currently no plans for a new high school in Woodstock.


Comment 7: What consideration has been given to the response of emergency services to the school, given the current proximity of these services to the proposed location? There are no emergency services on the north end of Woodstock - significant delays are experienced with response rates from fire/police/ambulance, especially brought to light by the recent construction on Highway 59/Van Ave.

Response 7: TVDSB works with our partners at the City of Woodstock and the County of Oxford to find the most suitable locations for schools in the community and these are ultimately determined by the municipal planning authorities. In selecting this location, the provision of emergency services would have been considered by both the City and County.


Comment 6: What is the population estimate (new construction units) for the new household development directly surrounding the school?

Response 6: There are approximately 337 residential units either currently under construction or conditionally approved in north Woodstock. Student yields from each development vary based on the types of dwellings being built.


Comment 5: Will the new Child Care Centre be operated by Good Beginnings Child Care? With the new funding, are there any plans to provide a bigger, better space at OS (Oliver Stephens Public School) for the School Age Program?

Response 5: TVDSB will initiate a Request for Proposals for a Child Care Organization for the New Woodstock School's Child Care Centre. The date is to be determined. Once the successful organization is selected through the Request for Proposals process, we will post the organization's name and contact information on our website.

TVDSB will work with Good Beginnings to determine the child care needs for before and after school care at Oliver Stephens. We initiate these conversations in the spring each year to determine the needs for each September.

Comment 4: For the school and the daycare, when/how are you hiring for staff? I would like to inquire more about how to apply to the daycare part of this new school. Thank you very much.

Response 4: Thames Valley District School Board will initiate a Request for Proposals for a child care organization to operate the child care centre. The date is to be determined. Once a child care organization is approved, they will be responsible for hiring staff.


Comment 3: Where is the location of new school in Woodstock? 

Response 3: Thank you for your correspondence. TVDSB is in negotiations with a developer in order to secure a school site within the Havelock Corners subdivision in north Woodstock. The site we’re working to acquire is located south of Oxford Road No. 17 and east of Queenston Boulevard. Our Board of Trustees will be establishing an attendance area for the new school over the next year and this will involve a comprehensive public consultation process.


Comment 2: What are the boundaries for the school? 

Response 2: Thank you for your message. TVDSB is in negotiations with a developer in order to secure a school site within the Havelock Corners subdivision in north Woodstock. The site we’re working to acquire is located south of Oxford Road No. 17 and east of Queenston Boulevard. Our Board of Trustees will be establishing an attendance area for the new school over the next year and this will involve a comprehensive public consultation process. 


Comment 1: I am very excited for the new school but I have a question. Will this school be a French Immersion? I really want this to be a public school as well as French Immersion school. I live in the subdivision and that would be so easier for the kids to attend a French school so close to us.

Response 1: Thank you for your correspondence. There are two French Immersion schools in Oxford County, being Roch Carrier French Immersion PS and Oliver Stephens PS. Roch Carrier French Immersion PS generally serves the north half of the City of Woodstock and Oxford County, while Oliver Stephens PS serves students residing in south Woodstock as well as the southern half of the County. The approved new elementary school in north Woodstock will be an English track Junior Kindergarten to Grade 8 school. Please note that the School Locator tool on our website may be used to confirm attendance boundaries. To confirm busing eligibility, kindly visit our transportation consortium: https://www.mybigyellowbus.ca/

Contact Us