August 25, 2020, Premier Doug Ford announced an investment of $15.9 million to build a new school in Etobicoke at Royal York Road and Eglinton Avenue. This school will accommodate 600 elementary students and create 88 new child care spaces, as part of the government’s commitment to invest $12 billion over 10 years in new and existing schools.
Premier Ford was joined by Minister of Education, Stephen Lecce, and Associate Minister of Transportation (GTA) and MPP for Etobicoke Centre, Kinga Surma.
Following this afternoon’s announcement, Premier Ford and ministers responded to questions from media regarding the province’s ongoing response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Earlier today, Ontario announced an investment of $455,000 from the Ontario Together Fund to support the retooling of operations at Dairy Distillery.
Questions from Media – Response to COVID-19
School Bus Drivers
When asked about the shortage of school bus drivers ahead of the upcoming school year, Minister Lecce confirmed that the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Transportation are working together to expedite the licencing process for bus drivers. Associate Minister Surma added that Metrolinx has offered assistance and where necessary, Metrolinx drivers can be used as an additional resource.
Back to School Advertisements
In response to questions about the government’s advertising of Ontario’s back-to-school plan, Premier Ford said that the objective of the campaign is to ensure parents, caregivers, teachers and students are informed on the details of the back-to-school plan and how they can play a role in keeping schools safe. He added that the government will be fully transparent in its reporting of the cost of the campaign.
Ontario Together Fund Investment in Local Distillery
Earlier today, the Ontario government announced an investment of $455,000 from the Ontario Together Fund in Dairy Distillery. This investment will enable the Almonte-based distillery to retool its operations and triple its capacity to produce hand sanitizer.
Dairy Distillery uses milk sugar, which would otherwise go to waste, to produce food-grade ethanol for making hand sanitizer. Throughout the pandemic, it has donated over 30,000 bottles of hand sanitizer to local groups in need.