New Moncton middle school opens its doors to students

After months of anticipation, and separation, students of Maplehurst Middle School are now together again under one brand new roof.

The 26.5 million dollar school in Moncton's north end opened its doors to students on Friday.

"I find it crazy that just like at the beginning seeing the school be built and now we're actually here after all the time and getting told about it so it's really crazy, but it's fun," said Olivia Mowat.

Mowat is in Grade 8 and president of the student council.

"I think its really fun, I mean, everyone's in the same school again and see everyone happy travelling the hallways all being together, I think is one of the nicest things," she said.

Pierre Fournier/CBC News

Students spent the first part of the school year split between Evergreen Park and Northrop Frye schools.

Even though they started the year in two different locations, they've already chosen their student council and have sports teams up and running.

The new school was built to address overcrowding in Moncton's fast growing north end.

Principal Liz Nowlan said students spent the day getting to know the new, three storey building.

"Connectedness to the building, so making sure they understand where to go and, as you've seen, there's a bit of confusion but they're going to figure it out in no time cause it's really logical once you get used to the directions," Nowlan said.

Pierre Fournier/CBC News

The new school has 30 classrooms, a triple-sized gym that can be sectioned off, a common area for students, science lab, music and art rooms and high tech spaces.

Nowlan said that while Friday was the first day for students, staff moved in just before Christmas.

That gave them the opportunity to do safety drills, and get to know the building and playground area.

Nowlan said 601 students are registered at Maplehurst Middle School, but the building is equipped to hold 700 or more.

Pierre Fournier/CBC News

She's happy the Maplehurst Huskies are finally in their new home.

"No one else has been in this building, so it's really exciting to know that we put the husky footprint and live by our values and really our mission is to realize our impact, so that's what the kids know and they understand.

"That's what we're expecting and we really want them to think that way."