By Mrs. White
West Riverview School was built in three phases:
- The first phrase (referred to as the Old Wing), was opened in 1961 with a total of eight classrooms and a staff of six teachers which included the principal, Mr. Vernon Alward.
- The second phase was another eight-room wing which was opened in 1969.
- The third and final phase was completed in 1971 and again added eight more classrooms for a final total of 24.
The staff, too, has grown in number to a present 23 teachers.
West Riverview School has always had bus student, but back in 1961, those students who lived too far away to walk travelled by means of the local Transit System.
Frozen ears were not uncommon to students who had to walk from the school to the nearest bus stop rather than being dropped off and picked up at the door of the school as is the case today.
The school opened prior to the days of Equal Opportunity implemented by Premier Louis J. Robichaud in 1967. Teachers negotiated new contracts at a local level rather than through a provincial body such as the New Brunswick Teachers Association.
The idea of a Strike Vote would have "blown some teachers' minds!" One member of the original staff at West Riverview recalls attending a meeting of the Local Branch in the Alma area where a vote was being taken to decide whether or not the teachers should have a raise. Being young at the time, she was shocked to see a few "old timers" vote "NAY" - their reasons being, they were about ready to retire and so a raise didn't matter to them - a far cry from the "All For One And One For All" attitude of today's negotiations!