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DDSB to sell former Ritson PS site

By Courtney Bachar/The Oshawa Express

The Durham District School Board (DDSB) will be selling the former Ritson Public School site in Oshawa.

The DDSB says the site, located at 300 Ritson Rd. S., has been declared surplus to the board’s needs.

Oshawa Trustee Michael Barrett says he’s walked through the school on many occasions, adding it’s unfortunate the board has to sell the site.

“I’m all about preserving history, but, unfortunately, this school is not set up for today’s standards,” he says.

The site was declared surplus on April 20, 2021, which is when the disposition process began.

According to a staff report, there are several organizations in which the board must offer the property at Fair Market Value, in order, including the French Public, English Catholic and French Catholic school boards; Education Community Partnership Program (ECPP)-Section 23 Agencies; Consolidated Municipal Service Managers; Local English and French language colleges and universities, Children’s Mental Health Lead Agencies; Local Health Integration Networks; Board of Health; Province of Ontario; City of Oshawa; Region of Durham; Indigenous organizations; and the federal government.

The report states these organizations have 90 days, until July 19, 2021, to declare an interest in the property.

If there is interest, the party has another 90 days, until October 18, 2021, to make an offer to purchase the site.

However, if no declaration of interest is made by July 19, the property will be put on the open market.

Ritson PS was closed in September 2012 following a South-Central Oshawa Accommodation Review in 2011. Ritson PS was one of three schools that were closed, along with Duke of Edinburgh PS and Harmony PS.

The three schools were consolidated into a new school, Clara Hughes, which was constructed on the former Duke of Edinburgh PS site.