Education happens only partly within the classroom. In today’s world this is sometimes overlooked because of the hazards of allowing one’s children unsupervised outdoor play. In Oliver Paipoonge our slogan “Growing Naturally” encompasses the idea that children can grow up in a safe and healthy natural environment, learning from the world around them. Our municipality is proud to be a safe place to raise children and very pleased to offer elementary school education within our borders as well as two public libraries, a Rural Roots Family Centre, drop-in play groups and various private daycares.
Children attending elementary school in Oliver Paipoonge are generally within 15 minutes’ drive of their classrooms, making it easy for many parents to drive their children to school. Excellent bussing services are also provided and children are generally picked up and dropped off at the ends of their driveways. Most elementary school students attend Kakabeka Falls Elementary school in Kakabeka, Valley Central School in the Slate River Valley or Crestview Elementary in Murillo. Others have chosen to enroll in Thunder Bay Christian School, a private institution which offers classes from Junior Kindergarten to grade 10.
High school students from the municipality are bussed or driven approximately 30 minutes to Thunder Bay. The majority of students from Oliver Paipoonge attend Westgate CVI, Sir Winston Churchill CVI or St. Patrick High School. Students can also apply to be enrolled in one of the other high schools operated by the Lakehead School Board or Thunder Bay Catholic District School Board.
There are various childcare and parenting resources available to municipality residents. Chief among these is the Rural Family Resource Centre in Murillo. The Centre offers a toy lending library, education and support for parents. It also has drop-in play facilities where parents can meet and socialize their children. Another drop-in play group operates out of the Rosslyn Community Centre once a week.
Most working parents make use of larger daycare facilities in Thunder Bay. Private daycares and babysitters operate within the Municipality and can be found through advertising and by word of mouth.
Residents seeking continuing or adult education have many resources available in nearby Thunder Bay. Single courses and full programs are offered at Confederation College and Lakehead University and various private career colleges offer skills development and adult education courses.The Lakehead School Board offers English Second Language and high school equivalency programs.
Two public libraries are available to residents. One is located in Murillo near the Municipal Offices. The second is under construction at the Rosslyn Community Centre and is expected to open as a fully handicapped-accessible facility in February 2010.