École J.H. Sissons School Renewal

École J.H. Sissons School was built in 1975, and while the update was originally planned as a retrofit project, due to significant wear and tear on the building and growth in the school population it was determined that a rebuild was required.

The scope of the rebuild adds new classroom spaces and a larger community gymnasium to replace and keep up with the school’s growing population.  The school is currently operating at 111 per cent capacity.

In February 2018, the Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) recommended that the new school be built on the existing site. Parents and the YK1 Board asked ECE to reconsider building the new school next to the existing school to decrease student disruption during the build. 

As the GNWT is responsible for constructing school infrastructure, it contracted a third party to conduct a geotechnical study of three sites on the J.H. Sissons property. Core samples, height of water table and ground stability were assessed for all three sites.

The results of that geotechnical study determined that the original site, where the school currently stands, is the most viable and stable location for both current and future use. Based on this information, the Minister of Education, Culture and Employment (ECE), Caroline Cochrane, has made a decision to proceed with the rebuild on the existing site.

Now that a decision has been made to proceed with a rebuild on the existing site, the project can begin. The planning study will be finalized and construction will begin in fall 2020, with an expected two-year build.

The next step is for YK1 to develop a plan to accommodate all of the students at École J. H. Sissons’ School during the two years of the construction.  YK1 has developed a DRAFT Accommodation Plan and is meeting with school staff and parents over the next several weeks to finalize that plan.  ECE has formed a steering committee, with YK1 representation to oversee the coordination and overall management for the rebuild project.

New information and documents will be added to this webpage throughout the planning and construction phases of this exciting school rebuild.  Check regularly for updates.

Quick facts

  • The Department of Education, Culture and Employment is responsible for the construction of new schools, colleges, community learning centres and libraries across the NWT.
  • YK1 is responsible for ongoing maintenance and operation of schools within its district along with the location of programming within its schools, including accommodation planning.


Project Timeline - J.H. Sissons Rebuild - May 2019

Project Summary - J.H. Sissons - May 2019

School Timeline - J.H. Sissons - May 2019

Project Summary - J.H. Sissons - June 2019 - NEW

Communications Flow Chart - J.H. Sissons Rebuild

Advisory Group - Terms of Reference - J.H. Sissons Rebuild

Geotechnical Study

Questions & Answers

DRAFT - Student Accommodation Plan



J.H. Sissons School Renewal Geotechnical Study - January 10, 2019

YK1 Student Accommodation Plan DRAFT - January 10, 2019