Innovation Fund: Selected projects 2016-2017

Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada's Innovation Fund provides funding to First Nation communities to build school facilities that are innovative, promote education reform or achieve cost savings. Beginning in 2016-2017, INAC is investing $50 million in the Innovation Fund over six years. In total, nine projects have been selected.

Region:

Alberta

Blood Tribe/Kainai

Blood Tribe/Kainai proposed construction of a new multi-use building for the Kainai Alternate Academy that combines three education programs into one facility:

  • Kainai Alternate Academy
  • Kainai Head Start Program
  • Hot Lunch Program/Kitchen

The new Kainai Alternate Academy will support the development of both younger and older students towards successful outcomes. The program was designed for students who have challenges in a typical classroom setting. The combination of the three programs provides students the opportunity to participate in work experience curriculum linked to the Hot Lunch Program and Kitchen.

Proposed innovations include:

  • cost sharing
    • over 45% of financing provided by First Nation
  • alternative procurement
    • design and construction services are contracted from a single company
  • alternative construction
    • modular construction

British Columbia

Adams Lake

The Adams Lake Indian Band and Westbank First Nation have proposed similar school expansions to existing schools with the same design. The communities will use these similarities to drive efficiencies in the design process for the proposed school expansions.

Proposed innovations include:

  • cost sharing
    • over 10% of financing provided by First Nations
  • alternative financing
    • financial institutions to provide loans or bonds
  • alternative construction
    • bundling of projects

Old Massett Village Council

Old Massett Village Council proposed the construction of a new elementary school to resolve overcrowding issues at the current school.

Proposed innovations include:

  • cost sharing
    • over 50% of financing provided by First Nation
  • alternative construction
    • modular construction

Squiala First Nation

Squiala First Nation proposed the construction of a new band-operated Montessori School on-reserve, to better address the needs of students.

Proposed innovations include:

  • cost sharing
    • over 50% of financing provided by First Nation
  • alternative financing
    • financial institutions to provide loans or bonds
  • alternative construction
    • aggregation of services

Westbank

The Westbank First Nation and Adams Lake Indian Band have proposed similar school expansions to existing schools with the same design. The communities will use these similarities to drive efficiencies in the design process for the proposed school expansions.

Proposed innovations include:

  • cost sharing
    • over 25% of financing provided by First Nations
  • alternative financing
    • financial institutions to provide loans or bonds
  • alternative construction
    • bundling of projects

Manitoba

Fisher River

Fisher River Cree Nation proposed construction of a new high school for grades 7 to 12. The existing school faces significant space limitations and challenges due to its age. Fisher River Cree Nation education programming is currently being studied as a successful education model for replication in other First Nation schools – an example of promoting education reform.

Proposed innovations include:

  • cost sharing
    • over 50% of financing provided by First Nation
  • alternative financing
    • financial institutions to provide loans or bonds
  • alternative procurement
    • design, build, finance and maintenance will be undertaken by one contractor in partnership with the First Nation
  • alternative construction
    • modular construction

Southeast Resource Development Council (SERDC)

Southeast Collegiate is a secondary school owned and operated by the Southeast Resource Development Council Corporation (SERDC) in the south end of Winnipeg. The college provides high school education with both sound academic standards and vocational opportunities to First Nations students whose home communities do not offer such facilities. The college currently has an enrolment of 140 students representing over 16 communities from as far as South Indian Lake and York Factory. The school boasts a retention rate of 97 percent and a graduation rate of 92 percent.

Originally constructed over 50 years ago, the existing college facilities have begun to show signs of deterioration and are beyond the point of repair. This project will support the construction of a new school and lodge for Southeast Collegiate, including a new vocational high school building, complete with 10 classrooms and a resource room; a new lodge building for student residence; and site development.

Proposed innovations include:

  • cost sharing
    • over 50% of financing provided by First Nation
  • alternative financing
    • financial institutions to provide loans or bonds
  • alternative construction
    • pre-fabricated construction

Quebec

Innu Takuaikan Uashat mak Mani-Utenam

The Innu community of Uashat mak Mani-Utenam proposed bundling three renovation and addition projects at existing school facilities to achieve cost-savings.

Proposed innovations include:

  • cost-sharing
    • over 10% of financing provided by First Nation
  • alternative financing
    • financial institutions to provide loans
  • alternative procurement
    • design and construction services are provided from a single company
  • alternative construction
    • bundling of projects

Saskatchewan

Meadow Lake Tribal Council

Meadow Lake Tribal Council proposed the establishment of an education authority to assume responsibility for all education programs within their eight member First Nations. The tribal council has requested support to undertake a facility assessment of all schools currently in their member First Nations, as a first step in this process.

Proposed innovations include:

  • cost sharing
    • up to 5% of financing provided by First Nations
  • alternative construction
    • aggregation of services
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