WCI’s New Auditorium Seating Remains Empty

For students coming back to WCI this year, there were many physical changes made in the building: from the newly painted lockers to replacing the windows to most recently replacing the chairs in the auditorium this past September.  

Before these new chairs were installed, the previous ones had not been changed since the opening of the school in 1960.

Drama teacher Ms. Urquhart, who relies heavily on the auditorium for different drama and dance productions at WCI, said, “The auditorium has needed new seating for as long as I have been here.”

Music teacher Mr. Piche, who also uses the auditorium for many large music performances, said that the chairs “were in desperate need of change and the old ones couldn’t be fixed. Due to missing seats and half broken chairs, it was becoming a safety concern”

The old auditorium chairs needed fixing and replacing. Photo by Mr. Chapman.

Most of the planning for the new seating was done through WCI’s vice principal, Mr. Chapman. When asked why the chairs were put in this year, he said, “We had been planning it for at least the last three years.”

“The decision was up to the Facilities Department at the Board. There are many projects throughout the entire school district that are prioritized by them. It was helpful to have that space shut down to WCI events as it gave the installers more flexibility in terms of their schedule and ability to get the project completed.”

New auditorium chairs have been installed. Photo by Mr. Chapman.

Urquhart further explained why this was a necessary change at WCI: “ I think it’s really important we value and invest in maintaining our spaces that provide so much for our students. Large-scale productions like the WCI Drama and Music department’s production of West Side Story, important assemblies such as Remembrance Day, and especially significant community events like the annual Jacob Ranton Memorial Basketball Tournament, who had KW Titans basketball coach, Cavell Johnson in for a special talk on mental health and wellness last year, need an appropriate setting to host such impactful events.”

She went on to say, “The new seats will make the space much more comfortable and safe for our students and members of our community who come out to support these activities.” 

Because of current COVID-19 restrictions and regulations in schools, the new chairs in the auditorium will likely not be used any time soon, but the space will now be maximized for school and community events when the school is able to host them.