[Skip to Content]
HWDSB Building

Community Use of Schools (Rentals)

Textsize
A+ A-

We are committed to student learning, equity, engagement and innovation. Through Community Use of Schools, HWDSB aims to strengthen our collaboration with new and existing community partners to enhance opportunities for students.

Most HWDSB schools are available for community use during the school year from:

  • 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., Monday to Friday; and
  • 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. on weekends

Please note the following:

  • Schools are generally unavailable for community use from mid-June through mid-September, Election Polling dates, Winter and March Break, Statutory Holidays, long holiday weekends or P.A. Days.
  • Permits for filming are not accepted from August to November.
  • Non-profit adult groups may be eligible for a 50% subsidy of facility rental fees.
  • Non-profit youth groups may be eligible for a 75% subsidy of facility rental fees.
  • The Ontario Ministry of Education provides Community Use of Schools funding. Subsidy eligibility and allocation is determined annually, based on funding availability.

Online Application System

Application Profile

Please make sure to fill out both forms above to ensure your requested rental is processed

Rental Fees are calculated as follows:

Permit Fee (+HST) + Facility Rental Fee (+HST) + Insurance Costs (including brokerage fee) (+PST) [if required] + Caretaking Fee (+HST) [if required].

1. Permit Fee

Please note, all fees listed below are subject to a $30.00 non-refundable permit application fee. Once an application has been approved, requested additions or changes are subject to a $10.50 alteration fee.

2. Facility Rental Fee

Non-profit adult groups may be eligible for a 50% subsidy and non-profit youth groups may be eligible for a 75% subsidy.

Please refer to the User Groups section for a definition of user groups if you are unsure what category you are in.

Community hourly rate
(non-profit with no subsidy)
Non-profit adult group with subsidy( 50%) Non-Profit youth group with subsidy (75%) Business Enterprise / Commercial (150%)
Gym*
(less than 2800 sq ft)
$21.50 $10.75 $5.38 $32.25
Gym*
(2800-4500 sq ft)
$31.61 $15.81 $7.90 $47.42
Gym*
(4501-4700 sq ft)
$63.22 $31.61 $15.81 $94.83
Gym*
(7400-9500+ sq ft)
$75.00 $37.50 $18.75 $112.50
Classroom $10.00 $5.00 $2.50 $15.00
Library $31.61 $15.81 $7.90 $47.42
Cafeteria $36.88 $18.44 $9.22 $55.32
Auditorium Class 1** $100.10 $50.05 $25.03 $150.15
Auditorium Class 2*** $70.06 $35.03 $17.51 $105.08
Auditorium Class 3**** $47.42 $23.71 $11.85 $71.12
Auditorium Class 4***** $31.61 $15.81 $7.90 $47.42
No Subsidy Available
Artificial Turf $102.30 $102.30 $102.30 $102.30
Natural Turf $40.92 $40.92 $40.92 $40.92
Unimproved Field $4.35 $4.35 $4.35 $4.35
Track $4.35 $4.35 $4.35 $4.35
Parking Lot $4.35 $4.35 $4.35 $4.35
All groups, regardless of the category, are subject to a $30.00 permit fee. HST is applied to the permit fee, space costs and caretaking fees.

Gym*

(1500-2800 sq ft)

Gym*

(2800-4500 sq ft)

Gym*

(4500-7400 sq ft)

Gym*

(7400-9500+ sq ft)

Adelaide Hoodless Ancaster High School Allan A. Greenleaf Dundas Valley Secondary School
AM Cunningham Ancaster High School Ancaster High School Glendale Secondary School
Bennetto Balaclava Ancaster Meadow Nora Frances Henderson Secondary School
Rockton (Beverly Central) Bennetto Frank Panabaker (Ancaster Senior) Saltfleet Secondary School
Buchanan Park Billy Green Bellmoore Sherwood Secondary School
Central Cecil B. Stirling Cathy Wever Sir Allan MacNab Secondary School
Earl Kitchener Cootes Paradise Chedoke Sir Winston Churchill Secondary School
Frank Panabaker (Fessenden) Dr. J. Edgar Davey Dalewood Waterdown District High School
George L. Armstrong Dr. J. Edgar Davey Dundas Central Waterdown District High School
Glen Brae Rockton (Dr. Seaton) Dundas Valley Secondary School Westmount Secondary School
Glen Echo Dundana Elizabeth Bagshaw
Glenwood Elizabeth Bagshaw Franklin Road
Hess Street Flamborough Centre Gatestone
Highview George L. Armstrong Green Acres
Holbrook Glendale Guy Brown
Huntington Park Gordon Price Helen Detwiler
James MacDonald Janet Lee Hillcrest
Lake Avenue Lincoln Alexander Lawfield
Lisgar Mary Hopkins Orchard Park Secondary School
Mary Hopkins Mount Hope Prince of Wales
Memorial (City) Nora Francis Henderson Secondary School Queen Mary
Memorial (S.C.) Orchard Park Secondary School Queen Victoria
Michaelle Jean Pauline Johnson R. A. Riddell
Millgrove R. A. Riddell Ray Lewis
Mount Albion Ryerson Ridgemount
Mountain View Saltfleet District High School Sir Wilfred Laurier
Mountview Sherwood Secondary School Sir William Osler
Norwood Park Sir A. MacNab Secondary School Templemead
Parkdale Spencer Valley Tiffany Hills
Spring Valley (Queen’s Rangers) Viscount Montgomery Westdale Secondary School
Queensdale W.H. Ballard Westdale Secondary School
R.L. Hyslop Westmount Secondary School Winona
Richard Beasley
Rosedale
Rousseau
Sir Isaac Brock
Strathcona
Tapleytown
Westview
Westwood
Yorkview

Auditorium Class 1* (Premium seating) – Ancaster, Glendale, Sir Allan MacNab, Westdale
Auditorium Class 2** (Regular seating) – Sherwood
Auditorium Class 3*** (Bench seating) – Nora Frances Henderson, Westmount
Auditorium Class 4**** – Dalewood, W.H. Ballard, Viscount Montgomery, Memorial (Hamilton)

3.Insurance Costs

Applicants must provide proof of $2 million comprehensive general liability insurance naming Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board as ‘Additional Insured’. If applicants do not have insurance they must purchase insurance through the online rental application process. Get more information on purchased insurance.

NOTE: There is a $15 brokerage fee to purchase insurance through HWDSB’s third-party provider of insurance.

4. Caretaking Fee

Caretaking fees are incurred for groups renting on Saturdays and Sundays at a minimum three-hour rate.  Overtime rates will also apply Monday through Friday if hours are beyond normal caretaking schedules or additional staff is required. Caretaking fees are $42.00 per hour on Saturdays and $56.00 per hour on Sundays.

User Groups

Non-profit with no subsidy

Registered non-profit groups, organizations or individuals that serve the broader community and charge fees or collect donations for participation in programs and opportunities. Fees are charged to participants that are more than covering the costs of permitting HWDSB facilities and incidental costs.

Non-profit adult group with subsidy

Non-profit groups and organizations that serve the needs of adults and that provide programming that is low cost or free for participation. Preference will be given to groups and organizations that provide programs and opportunities focused on supporting student achievement, skill building and that are neighbourhood based.

Non-profit youth group with subsidy

Non-profit groups and organizations that serve the needs of youth and that provide programming that is low cost or free for participation. Preference will be given to groups and organizations that provide programs and opportunities focused on supporting student achievement, skill building and that are neighbourhood based.

Business Enterprise / Commercial

Use of HWDSB facilities by youth/adult groups and organizations that are commercial or business in nature.

We are offering the rental of schools through an online reservation process.

Renting a School Facility is a Simple Four-Step Process:

1. Create an Account

If you are at least 18 years of age, have a valid email account and agree to the rules governing the use of school facilities, then you can create your account.

2. Apply

To rent a school facility, use the online application system. Log in to your account, enter the type of user you are and create a new permit.

3. Application Profile

Please fill in the online application. This form is used to identify the user category for your permit and assist with determining eligibility for subsidy. All applicants must complete this profile.

4. Processing

HWDSB staff will review your Application Profile and Permit. If use is available and appropriate for the request, your permit will be processed.

5. Approval

Your approval will occur with proof of insurance and payment. Upon approval, you will receive a notification of the approved permit.

Distribution of School Space:

At times groups are looking to rent the same space at the same time. When this instance happens, the following criteria will be used to determine who gets the space:

  • Schools and school-related activities always have first priority for use of their respective facilities
  • Partnerships and agreements with Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board
  • Non-Profit Youth Groups with Subsidy
  • Non-Profit Adult Groups with Subsidy
  • Non-Profit No Subsidy
  • Business Enterprise / Commercial Groups

In each user category, preference for use of Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board facilities is given to groups and organizations whose activities, events, programs, and opportunities are:

  • Supporting or contributing to student achievement and skill building
  • Neighbourhood or community-based and where users are part of the neighbourhoods in which the facility is located to help develop relationships and support neighbourhood community-building
  • Using Board space to provide low or no cost opportunities to participants
  • Sponsored or funded by the Government of Ontario

Monthly online credit card payment is a requirement for all recurring (weekly/monthly) permit holders.

  1. Billing to the credit card, for organizations with permits having multiple rental dates, is on the last day of the month before the permitted event.
  2. Any adjustments to permits that modify costs after billing has occurred for the month will be made on the next billing cycle (ie. the following month).
  3. Please note that organizations with a credit card on file will automatically have the credit card billed for all costs.
  4. Organizations who are billed monthly by credit card will be sent an email of the invoice each month. It is also available by logging into your eBase account.
  5. Refunds will be issued at the end of the year for monthly billed customers.
  6. If your permit is a one-time event and you are not an organization with permits having multiple rental dates, your permit costs (fees, space costs and insurance and caretaking overtime if applicable) will be billed directly to your credit card upon approval of the permit if the event is within the month that the permit is issued. If the event is later in the year, the credit card will be charged on the last day of the month before the permitted event.
  7. Groups whose overall account activity does not require an online credit card for monthly billing will be required to pay their permit costs in full prior to the permit being approved. Alternate acceptable payment methods are cheque, bank draft or money order or you may call in your card number to a Rentals staff member.  Payment must be received 5 business days prior to the event date. Permits we have not received payment for will be cancelled. Cheques are made payable to Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board and can be dropped off at:

20 Education Court, Hamilton – off Upper Wentworth, across from Limeridge Mall

Or mailed to:

Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board, Attn – Rentals, PO Box 2558, Hamilton, ON L8N 3L1

Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us at 905-527-5092, extensions 2522 or 2524.

The following Rules and Regulations govern the use of Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board (HWDSB) facilities. Failure to comply may result in immediate permit cancellation and may impact on future requests for use of HWDSB facilities, at no cost or liability to HWDSB.

Responsibilities of the Permit Holder

The person named as the permit holder is responsible for all rules and regulations that apply to the use of HWDSB facilities. Rental groups/organizations are required to conform to all Regulations of the Province of Ontario and By-Laws of the City of Hamilton. An approved permit for use of space is only for the group/organization listed on the permit.

Top 10 Things to Remember About Community Use of Schools (Permit Holders)

Supervision

  • Adequate adult supervision is required by all rental groups for the entire duration of the rental.
  • An adult is a responsible person who is 18 year of age or older.
  • It is the responsibility of the permitted user to ensure that their participants:
    • remain within the designated rental area(s)
    • not damage the building or grounds
    • leave the school on, or before, the ending time of the rental permit
  • The adult supervisor must be the first person to enter the facility and the last to leave.
  • When renting multiple spaces in a facility, there must be a supervisor in charge of each area (i.e. when multiple classrooms are used, there must be a supervisor for each classroom).
  • If adequate adult supervision is not demonstrated at all times by the user, the permit for use of space will be cancelled and future requests for use will be declined.

Facilities

General

  • Smoking or vaping (including holding a lit cigarette – tobacco or cannabis – or activated e-cigarette) is prohibited on all school property (buildings and all outdoor spaces).  Additional information on the Smoke-Free Ontario Act, 2017 can be found at www.Ontario.ca.
  • Effective September 1, 2019, the ability to serve or consume alcoholic beverages will NO LONGER be permitted in buildings, or on the grounds of HWDSB premises
  • The room capacity must not exceed the Fire Prevention Division Maximum Occupant Load indicated on the capacity card posted.
  • No pets. Service Animals are permitted as outlined through the Use of Service Dogs in Schools Procedure
  • Spaces are rented “as is”, and permitted based on the appropriateness of the requested use. They are to be left in their original condition.
  • Cafeterias are the only spaces where food and drink are permitted
  • Additional staff may be required depending on the type and scale of use. This may include additional caretaking coverage and security guards.

Cafeteria

  • Rental groups must rent the cafeteria for the consumption of food and/or beverages.
  • Rental groups must leave the cafeteria clean and as they found it previous to use.
  • Cooking is an excluded activity in any space.

Parking Lots

  • Parking must be confined to a facility’s parking lot or street parking.
  • No parking is allowed on fields or paved playgrounds.
  • Renters are solely responsible and liable for all vehicles and the contents inside vehicles that enter or park on Board property.
  • HWDSB does not guarantee the availability of parking spaces for rentals at any of our facilities.
  • Any questions about parking should be directed to the facility.
  • Overnight parking is strictly prohibited.

Auditorium

  • Auditorium rentals require the employment of a minimum of two student assistants as stage crew to work the sound and lighting system at all secondary schools. Rates and charges are determined by the school and payable directly to the school.
  • Additional rented spaces may be required, such as changerooms or private spaces for performers/speakers, depending on your event needs.
  • Auditorium schools may have theatre arts programmes that limit availability.
  • Not all auditoriums have stage crews or may have limited availability. If no stage crew can be scheduled, the application will be re-directed, as available.

Gymnasium

  • Non-marking, rubber-soled shoes must be worn at all times for all sports activities in gymnasium and auditorium spaces.
  • Floor hockey is not permitted in any school gymnasium unless plastic or composite floor hockey equipment is used.
  • Indoor soccer balls must be used for all soccer rental activities.
  • Rugby, football, and lacrosse are not allowed in any gymnasium of HWDSB.

Outdoor Spaces

  • All activity conducted on exterior spaces of Board property is subject to the same Rules and Regulations governing interior activity and requires a permit.
  • No access to buildings.
  • Parking is only approved in designated parking areas and is subject to any applicable by-laws – there is never any parking on fields.
  • No metal cleats or blades.
  • No smoking.
  • No glass.
  • No chewing gum.
  • Dates and hours or use is dependent upon outdoor space type, season and weather and is determined seasonally.

Field Closures/Rain-Out Policy

  • See under cancellation.

Unimproved Fields

  • Unimproved Fields: Season determined bi-annually (May and September), dependent upon weather and condition of the field.
  • Unimproved Fields used “as is” and size and dimensions vary from facility to facility. Permit applicants are encouraged to visit the requested site and determine suitability for the intended use.
  • Any dates requested prior to the start date of the season and following the end of the season will be cancelled/removed.

Natural Turf Fields – Westdale, Sir Allan MacNab

  • Available July and August from 8:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. – maximum 25 hours per week (all uses combined).

Artificial Turf Fields – Sir Winston Churchill

Hours of use –  September 1 to November 30:

Monday to Thursday 6:30 p.m. – 11 p.m.
Friday 6 p.m. -11 p.m.
Saturday/Sunday 8 a.m. – 11 p.m.

Hours of use –  April 1 to June 30:

Monday to Thursday 6:30 p.m. – 11 p.m.
Friday 6 p.m. – 11 p.m.
Saturday/Sunday 8 a.m. – 11 p.m.

Hours of Use – July 1 to August 31:

Monday to Sunday  8 a.m. – 11 p.m.

Equipment

  • Rental groups/organizations are not allowed to store furniture, equipment or materials in any of our facilities. Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board holds no responsibility, nor does insurance cover any items left by permit holders.
  • Permits include the use of volleyball standards and basketball nets. Sporting equipment such as volleyball nets, ball, floor mats, scoreboards, etc. are not included as part of the rental agreement.
  • Rental charges do not include the use of school audio-visual equipment or sound system and stage lighting for auditoriums. This must be arranged directly with the school at least one week in advance of your rental.
  • Permit holders may use the tables and chairs belonging to a facility if they are available and shown on the permit.

Security

  • In the event of an emergency, contact the After Hours Security Desk at 905-667-3079.
  • During a rental, Caretakers will open a designated door 15 minutes prior to the rental start time and will lock the door 15 minutes after the rental begins.
  • If a group has people coming and going, the group is to arrange to have a door monitor in place. Doors are NOT to be propped open.
  • The rental group/organization shall notify the Caretaker on duty if a stranger to them enters the facility.
  • The rental group/organization is advised to have access to a cell phone for general use and emergencies.
  • For large, full day events and competitions, HWDSB may require security guards to be employed for the entire duration of permitted use of space. The cost of security guards will be the responsibility of the rental group/organization.

Safety & Excluded Activities

Injury

  • The permit holder is required to immediately report a critical injury and/or accident to the Caretaker on duty at the facility so that they can secure the space in which the injury and/or accident occurred.
  • It is the responsibility of all permit holders to report critical injuries and/or accidents that occur while on HWDSB property to:
    Sandra Clement – Manager, Purchasing Services
    purchasing@hwdsb.on.ca
  • Critically injured means an injury of a serious nature that:
    • Places life in jeopardy
    • Produces unconsciousness
    • Results in substantial loss of blood
    • Involves the fracture of a leg or arm, but not a finger or toe
    • Involves the amputation of a leg, arm, hand or foot, but not a finger or toe
    • Consist of burns to a major portion of the body
    • Causes the loss of sight in an eye

Fire

  • The HWDSB Approved Fire Safety Plan is applicable at all times when the building is occupied.
  • Any person detecting smoke or fire must immediately sound the fire alarm by activating the nearest fire alarm pull station and call 911. All fires must be reported to the Fire Department by calling 911.
  • On hearing the fire alarm signal, all activities are to be stopped and everyone must evacuate the building using the nearest safe exit or alternate exit. Only when it is determined to be safe by the attending Fire Department personnel, will participants be allowed to re-enter the facility.

Excluded Activities

Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board reserves the right to exclude any requested activity in their sole discretion.  Some examples (but not limited to) of excluded activities include:

  • Inflatables such as jumpers, slides, houses, castles, etc. and dunk tanks are not permitted on Board premises.
  • Pyrotechnics are prohibited in all HWDSB buildings and properties.
  • Games of chance, lotteries, bingo games and all other forms of gambling are forbidden on HWDSB property.

Damages/Post-Use Assessments

  • Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board retains the right to review and assess damages or any additional costs incurred during a permitted use. A revised permit will be provided detailing these costs and financial responsibility is borne by the permit holder in its entirety.

Top 10 Things to Remember About Community Use of Schools Permits (For Caretakers)

Cancellations

  • Cancellations, changes to date(s) and time(s) and additions to approved permits for use of space can be requested through our online system for scheduling community use of schools.
  • At least five business days notice is required for any change to an existing permit for use of space. Changes and additions to permits less than five business days from the start of the permit use will not be considered. Cancellations less than five business days from the start of the permit, will result in no refund to the group for their cancellation.
  • When a rental group does not show for their scheduled permit of use, they will receive one warning by e-mail from the Rental Administrator. On the second occurrence, the remainder of the permit for use will be cancelled. In addition, a rental group who received a subsidy for their permit will be charged the full rental costs (space and caretaking fees (if applicable)) for the No Show occurrence.
  • Use of HWDSB facilities will be automatically cancelled when schools are closed due to inclement weather, strikes, or any other causes beyond the control of HWDSB. When a cancellation occurs, permit holders and Board staff will be notified by email. Closure on a Friday means that schools will not open again until Monday. Therefore, permits for Friday evening, Saturday, and/or Sunday will be cancelled.
  • Approved permits for use of space may be cancelled, or dates of permits may be changed if the permitted facilities are required by the Board for school activities, or by the government for polling stations. If a rental group is displaced by a school activity or an election, the Rental Administrator will contact the group to revise the existing permit.
  • Permits may be revoked or cancelled by HWDSB in its sole, absolute and unfettered discretion at any time, with or without cause, and without penalty or any further liability of HWDSB; and the rental group shall have no claim or right to any reimbursement or costs whatsoever as a result of any losses, damages or expenses incurred by the rental group in connection with such revocation or cancellation.

Field closure/Rain-out policy

  • Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board mirrors the City of Hamilton’s Sports Field Rain-Out Policy.
  • It is the permit holder’s responsibility to check the status/condition of a field prior to use.
  • Fields are considered unplayable and use cancelled if the following conditions exist:
    • Visual ponding of water on the surface.
    • Water sponging up when the area is walked upon.
  • If the use of the field is continued under the above listed unplayable/cancelled conditions, Permit Holders will be accountable for:
    • Full liability and responsibility for any accidents or injuries.
    • Payment for all damages to the field resulting from that use.

How are rental rates set?

The rental rates represent the costs to the board to make the space available on an hourly basis. Through the use of Ministry of Education grants, we are able to provide subsidies to non-profit youth and adult groups. Subsidy allocations are determined on an annual basis, dependent upon the Ministry of Education grant and the requests for support. Allocation one year does not indicate future allocations; nor does denial one year mean denial thereafter.

How do I know what my user group category is?

Please refer to the User Group section for a description of each user group. If you are still unsure, contact the Rental Administrator for assistance.

How long does it take for permit approval?

Permit applications are accepted throughout the year. Processing times will vary depending on request volume, with September representing our highest volume time. During processing, your permit request is modified (including but not limited to removal of dates, adjustments to start and end times, addition of staffing costs). Rentals staff may add questions or requests onto the Discussion board that will require the applicant’s response. You will receive notifications of changes to your permit and Discussion items, as well as notice of your approval.

How is it decided who gets the rental?

At times groups are looking to rent the same space at the same time. When this instance happens, the following order of user groups priorities will be used to determine who gets the rental space:

  • Schools and school-related activities always have first priority for use of their respective facilities
  • Partnerships and agreements with Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board
  • Non-Profit Youth Groups with Subsidy
  • Non-Profit Adult Groups with Subsidy
  • Non-Profit No Subsidy
  • Business Enterprise / Commercial Groups

In each user category, preference for use of Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board facilities is given to groups and organizations whose activities, events, programs, and opportunities are:

  • Supporting or contributing to student achievement and skill building
  • Neighbourhood or community-based and where users are part of the neighbourhoods in which the facility is located to help develop relationships and support neighbourhood community-building
  • Using Board space to provide low or no cost opportunities to participants
  • Sponsored or funded by the Government of Ontario

How will I know when my permit is approved

Your permit will be approved once payment is received and your Certificate of Insurance has been verified.

You will receive a copy of your permit via email.

Be sure to check the dates and times for accuracy.

I am a registered nfp, do all my uses qualify for subsidy?

Allocation of subsidy is determined annually, based on funding availability.

Recognition as a not-for-profit or charitable organization is not required for subsidy eligibility.  Preference is given to programming that is offered to youth participants that is free or low cost, inclusive and is promoted widely to the local community.

For more information on the Ontario Ministry of Education Community Use of Schools initiative, please visit https://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/general/elemsec/community/

Am I required to have insurance for my rental?

Yes. All permits must have insurance or the permit will not be issued. Your Certificate of Insurance must have a minimum $2 million general liability naming Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board as the additional insured. If you are unable to provide a Certificate of Insurance, you must purchase insurance through HWDSB.

What happens if I don't get the space I requested?

You may not receive the space you requested, depending on demand and the distribution of space. However, staff will continue to work with you to find an alternate location. We endeavour to accommodate all user groups when they are requesting space within our schools.

Are we allowed to use school equipment?

Permit holders are only allowed the use of the tables and chairs as listed on the permit.

No gym equipment other than volleyball, badminton and basketball standards/nets are available for community use. Score clocks may be available to the users, subject to the school procedures, approval and user fees.

A qualified technician must be present when the school’s multi-media equipment is used, and a charge will apply.

School stage crew or Board stage technician must be present when the school sound, lighting and multimedia equipment is being used. Fees apply for these services.

Storage is not available.

Community Use of Schools Appeal Form

An appeal application for Community Use of School space

Updated on Friday, June 21, 2019.
Back to the top