Category Archives : Education Funding

School Board action on Carbon Offsets

The Trustees of British Columbia’s School District 5 (Southeast Kootenay) recently passed the following motion, and wrote an explanatory letter to the Honourable George Abbott, BC Minister of Education. The motion, and letter, communicate challenges they face within the current structure of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Targets Act, and suggests improvements that would help their district READ MORE

How a Dyslexic Student Could Change Canada’s Schools

In this Tyee article , Past North Vancouver School Board Trustee Crawford Kilian writes about potential implications of the recent Supreme Court of Canada ruling that the North Vancouver School Board must reimburse the family of Jeffery Moore, who put their son into private school in order to get adequate support for his learning disability.  As the READ MORE

Vancouver School Board releases results of public consultations

The Vancouver School Board has released the results of surveys conducted as part of its public consultation process.  The board will be discussing the results, including whether or not to redevelop properties in the face of declining enrolments and provincial funding as well as the introduction of a balanced school calendar. Read more at the Vancouver Sun READ MORE

Faced with declining enrollment Toronto School Board may have to close 171 schools

The Toronto School Board is considering closing171 schools to deal with a significant drop in enrollment. While the student population has dropped by 71,000 students, many worry that closing schools will have serious consequences for students, families and neighbourhoods. Trustee Cathy Dandy called closing schools “the most wasteful, inefficient, myopic thing any government can consider, READ MORE

BC school boards to recapture carbon offset funds

BC school boards have succeeded in recapturing funds previously levied on them and distributed to the private sector. Carbon offset fees charged to boards by the Pacific Carbon Trust will now be deposited with the Ministry of Education’s Energy Efficient Capital Account for the exclusive use by boards for energy-efficiency projects. This should amount to READ MORE

Providing free food to students improves scores, reduces tardiness and boosts overall well-being

Despite the overwhelming evidence that shows that providing free healthy food to students results in an immediate jump in test scores alongside improved behaviour and reduced tardiness ,there is still no stable source of funding for such programs. Schools rely on donations from communities and businesses resulting in inconsistent delivery of programs. An article by Stephen READ MORE

City of Toronto proposing major cuts to school board funding

A recent announcement that all city boards including school boards will be facing budget cuts of ten percent came as a surprise to many Toronto school boards. Two of the city’s largest boards had just met with the Mayor’s office to discuss coordination of services and cost saving measures days before the cuts were announced READ MORE

School Boards raising concern about lack of fairness with BC’s carbon offset program

All BC public institutions are legislated to be carbon neutral. To achieve this they have no choice but to purchase carbon offsets. Those offsets must be purchased from the Pacific Carbon Trust , a crown corporation that charges much more than any other offset company. Pacific Carbon Trust purchases offsets from industry and then sells them to public READ MORE

Success of school food program exceeds expectations

A Toronto-based school food program is proving successful in raising academic scores and improving behavior for the students it serves. “Feeding Our Future,” was started after a Toronto student was shot by a fellow student. Some administrators and nutrition experts argued that “hungry kid was an angry kid.” By providing the basics – a meal READ MORE

The Kamloops-Thompson School district (No. 73) wants to see its carbon offsets go back into the public sector

School Districts across BC pay carbon tax to the Pacific Carbon Trust which then funnels that money into several private sector energy efficiency projects. Last year the PCT collected $4 million from BC schools. The Kamloops-Thompson School district (No. 73) wants to see its carbon offsets go back into the public sector. Read more at BC READ MORE

Catch $25: How mandatory carbon offsets are undermining real emissions reductions in BC school districts

School districts in BC are caught in a Catch 22. Provincial carbon neutral measures are forcing districts to pay for carbon offsets that don’t actually reduce the districts’ own emissions AND drain funds from education operating budgets. The bigger the emissions gap, the more offsets districts have to buy; the more they have to buy, READ MORE

All day kindergarten a semi solution to a larger problem

The introduction of all day kindergarten is causing some tension for parents and teachers alike. Although many parents and teachers agree the program will help youngsters with reading and arithmetic they feel the introduction of the program is rushed and poorly funded. The program is meant to address gaps in early childhood education and care, READ MORE

BC School Boards receive fresh blow from the Ministry of Education

Last Friday the Ministry of Education informed school boards that they are now responsible for paying property insurance premiums. This carves a significant amount of money out of already stretched school board budgets. Vancouver’s school board will have to pay the highest premiums at $291,285.27, amounting to significant cuts to school programs and staff. Read READ MORE

Special needs students falling by the wayside in BC

Increases in the number of special needs students and decreases in the number of special education teachers leave unions and parent groups worried that these students aren’t getting the qualified instruction they need. They point the finger at the BC government’s passing of Bill 28 in 2002, which removed funding for special needs services, and READ MORE

BC’s school libraries are most affected by chronic underfunding

Many schools across the province are facing major budget shortfalls, and according to a recent report, it is libraries that bear the brunt of cost-cutting measures. In the 2009-2010 year, parents and schools were able to raise 1.2 million dollars to keep school libraries afloat. However, dollars raised varied widely according to neighbourhood income, underscoring READ MORE

A New Coalition—Business and Education Leaders, and the Mayor Make the Case for More Education Funding

Surrey business leaders, education leaders and Mayor Diane Watts have joined together to appeal for more education funding. Surrey has the largest public-school district in the province and the local board of trade has argued that education is a cornerstone of a stable economy.The Surrey board of trade recently released a paper titled Education Today, Productivity Tomorrow . Read READ MORE

Vancouver Board to Lay Off Dozens of Staff, Close School, Drop 10 Days

The Vancouver School Board says it’s getting ready to lay off dozens of staff, close at least one school, and shorten the school year by 10 days, citing an $18.1-million deficit it blames on the provincial government. Provincial funding for schools has failed to keep pace with rising labor costs and mandated energy -efficiency retrofits READ MORE

When More is Less: Education Funding in BC

Why are school districts cutting staff and laying off teachers?A Centre for Civic Governance research report finds growing evidence that the funding formula does not cover the costs of public education. The Centre for Civic Governance at Columbia Institute reviewed the 2008-2009 preliminary annual budgets developed by boards of education across the province. The study READ MORE

Campus Report: Disappearing Water Fountains

As more municipalities consider banning bottled water from municipal facilities, Canadian university and college campuses are moving in the opposite direction. A new report from the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) titled “Corporate Initiatives on Campus: A Snapshot” reveals that since the implementation of beverage exclusivity contracts with Coke and Pepsi, drinking fountains are on the decline.

Langley Special Education Inquiry Report

The Langley Special Education Inquiry Report , released in January 2008, was a joint project of the District Parent Advisory Council, CUPE Local 1260, and the Langley Teachers’ Association. Key findings of the report include that there has been an historical underfunding of special education in BC that has led to overcrowded classrooms and unmanageable caseloads for teachers. The Inquiry READ MORE

October 2007 Changes to Education Funding

On October 18th, the Ministry of Education announced changes to the education funding formula. These changes are to come into effect immediately, despite the fact that school boards have already established their budgets for the current school year. The changes being made to the funding formula apply to students in grades 10, 11 and 12. READ MORE

Commission on Public Education Report – Saanich School Board

In October of 2006, the Saanich School Board formed a Commission of Public Education, which included three trustees, the Superintendent of Schools and a respected community member. The Commission was tasked with receiving feedback on the Board’s declared values, programs, priorities and services; addressing the ongoing funding shortfalls facing the Board and receiving ideas on READ MORE