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Minister of Education Rejects Columbus Centre Redevelopment Initiative

TORONTO, February 23, 2018 – Villa Charities Inc. today announced the redevelopment of the Columbus Centre in partnership with Dante Alighieri Academy will not be going forward in its current format, as the Toronto Catholic District School Board (TCDSB) has rejected the project, based on the direction from the Minister of Education, Indira Naidoo-Harris. This decision was made in isolation and without discussion with Villa Charities or the receipt of the Director of Education’s final report.

“In good faith and at the request of the previous Minister of Education Mitzie Hunter, we implemented public consultations at great expense and delayed our OMB hearing for the project,” said Aldo Cundari, Chair of the Villa Charities Inc. Board of Directors. “We are extremely disappointed the new Minister advised the TCDSB Trustees to abandon the joint venture before the process was complete and the Director of Education could provide his final report and recommendation to the school board trustees.”

Villa Charities Inc. remains committed to the redevelopment of the Columbus Centre to meet the needs of Italian-Canadians today and for future generations, and an increasingly diverse and changing community.

About Villa Charities

Villa Charities Inc. is a registered charity that celebrates and promotes the Italian Heritage, Culture, Language, Arts, Food, and Family Values. For almost 50 years across the GTA, Villa Charities has provided care for seniors and offered educational and cultural programs in music, dance, visual arts, culinary arts, athletics and more. The Villa Charities family includes Villa Colombo Services for Seniors in Toronto; Villa Colombo Vaughan/Di Poce Centre; Caboto Terrace, Casa Del Zotto and Casa Abruzzo apartments for independent seniors; the Columbus Centre; and Joseph D. Carrier Art Gallery. For more information, visit www.villacharities.com

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For more information, please contact:
Jessica Patriquin
416-640-5525 Ext. 230

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