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Building a strong future for Edmonton's youth

by Staff Writer / Edmonton Oilers
Crystal Hennigar - student at Inner City High
A student at Inner City High, Crystal Hennigar, talks about her experience at the school and how the Edmonton Oiler Community Foundation's project will make a difference.  LISTEN 
EOCF Press Conference
Audio from Wednesday's press conference announcing the Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation Inner City High School project and Cash is King Lottery.  LISTEN 
The Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation (EOCF) is proud to announce the launch of a new initiative that will provide for future generations of young people in Oil Country, and leave a lasting legacy for the city of Edmonton. The EOCF has committed to leading the construction of a new Inner City High School and residence that will bring the hopes and dreams of its students to life – proudly proclaiming the power of education in the inner city.

“No longer will a students’ personal situation limit their access to education,” said Doug Goss, Chair, Board of Directors of the EOCF. “Inner City High School will meet the students where they are at and ensure that their physical and educational needs are met – helping them to fulfill their dreams of a better place in our world.”

Inner City High School (ICHS), run by Dr. Joe Cloutier, currently operates out of the Boyle Street Community League, and offers youth an academic and arts-based alternative to the traditional school setting, as well as an alternate route to achieving a high school diploma. Inner City High School is not only concerned with the students academic needs but also, due to the diverse backgrounds and situations that they come from, with helping students to work through various personal issues such as finding appropriate accommodation, counseling, food or medical care.

The few rooms in the current facility must each serve many different functions putting a strain on, and limiting, this unique and necessary learning environment.  In addition, accommodation for the school’s students is a prime concern in order for them to achieve success at ICHS, and at the current time there is not a residence associated with the school.  The majority of the students come from high-risk backgrounds and many have no fixed address to call home – making the reality of completing school remote, at best.

With the assistance of Edmonton-based architects, Cohos Evamy and lead-architect Donna Clare, the EOCF is working to create a new facility that will accommodate 150 students – a 125% increase over the current building.  It will provide a top-quality educational environment, including counseling and healthcare rooms, an Elder’s room, childcare facilities and a residence capable of accommodating a significant portion of the student population. It is estimated that the new facility will cost between $20-$30 million dollars, and will encompass approximately 7,000 square meters.

The development of the new Inner City High School project will be supported in part through funds raised by the new Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation Cash Is King Lottery. Further information on the lottery, including ticket sales, can be found online at

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