GFSS swaps weight room and library

The current library space at Grand Forks Secondary School (GFSS) will become the weight room.

Shawn Lockhart, vice-principal at GFSS, said that the move is about changing the culture of the school.

“We’re going to move our fitness centre from downstairs and bring it upstairs,” Lockhart said. “We want to increase our (students) amount of physical activity.”

He adds though that the move is also about practicality.

The current weight room is located in the school’s basement and is not well ventilated. Lockhart said that because of its isolation and the lack of staff to constantly watch the room, there aren’t many open times to use the weight room.

“Right now we have kids that are using it… outside of the timetable, so we’d like to move it up to a more central location to be utilized by more people,” he said.

The students must also currently go to the weight room with a partner. By relocating the room to the space occupied by the library, the room would be easier to supervise.

“It’s also about creating a bit more of a university atmosphere in here, instead of having the gym tucked away in the corner,” he said. “(Upstairs), people can walk by it, see other people working out and things like that.”

The library, he said, is currently open only half the time. The school is also going to switch to a more electronic medium of learning, with subscriptions to online databases, like Ebsco.

Lockhart said that a third of the books are obsolete anyway and so will be disposed of, while the rest will be moved to the room at the west end of the school, currently a work class.

“Our librarian took a look at what’s checked out, what’s used and what’s not, and we’re just moving that,” he said.

The other moves around the school are about making a more practical environment.

He also said that because of declining enrolment and moves to digital resources, fewer textbooks are needed and that frees up a lot of storage room in the school as well.