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Dwight International School remains committed to Cowichan
Cowichan educational pillar, Dwight International School, is not selling its Shawnigan Lake site and leaving the valley, the head of school says.
Contrary to Dwight's advertisement — through agent Jones Lang LaSalle — indicating its 23.1-acre lakeside property was for sale, "we're not going to move from the valley," said Jerry Salvador.
"We'll be in the valley next year, and hopefully for many years."
No price appears in the JLL ad stating, "The vendor will be looking to relocate its campus and student enrollment to a new campus they have identified in Victoria, to align with their growth strategy in B.C."
But Salvador said Dwight has found an investor through internal sources, that is funding "a couple of million dollars" in renovations to its 87,000 square feet of building space and grounds, to help attract more students.
Upgrades are being made to structures "and things you don't see, like new heating and electrical systems."
"We're looking at other phases of growth and investment."
Dwight has about 120 pupils now — about half from other countries.
"We could take about 150 boarders and 150 day students. We have lots of area for growth. With the investment, we can remain here," Salvador said.
An asking price, he noted, was not stated as "we got different amounts and figures, so (price) wasn't ever determined."
What is clear, he said, is Dwight's commitment to Cowichan and the former Maxwell Baha'i School site Dwight bought in 2009.
"But that doesn't preclude us from expanding to a second campus," Salvador explained. "We'd have two campuses. We could have a second one in Victoria, and that wouldn't impinge on this one."
Meanwhile, Salvador was satisfied about Dwight's bright local future, and its expansion plans.
"We're very happy out here — it's a great facility and a great location. We're loved by everyone."