In addition to losing their city and many losing their homes, the Fort McMurray wildfire has also caused a huge disruption to the school year for students. Those who have resettled in Bonnyville are being welcomed with open arms as they start the remainder of their school year at Bonnyville Centralized High School.
“We’re starting to see them trickle in,” says Principle Corey Baker. “The bulk of our kids are starting tomorrow and a few more are thinking of registering. We have students giving them tours, we have staff answering all their questions. We’re making it as comfortable for them as possible and so far so good.”
Class size shouldn’t be an issue either. Fort McMurray students are dispersing throughout the province and BCHS expects to only see maybe ten to a dozen new students start taking classes there.
The BCHS gym has been made into a makeshift donation center where evacuees can pick up whatever they need. “It’s been steady in there today for sure,” says Taylor. “The Baptist church has been helping out there and it’s been going well.”
The gym has so much supplies that the town and MD of Bonnyville have asked residents to refrain from adding to the stockpile for the time being.