October 4, 2023

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Sask. school division cutting 21 teaching jobs, CFO blames inadequate gov’t funding

Sask. school division cutting 21 teaching jobs, CFO blames inadequate gov’t funding

Saskatchewan’s South East Cornerstone Community College Division is slicing 21 educating positions and 11 other guidance workers to make up for a $2.5-million deficit, in accordance to its main economic officer.

“However we did have to lower staff members in get to minimize the deficit that we were being heading to have in our budget,” stated CFO Shelley Toth.

Toth reported the division is chopping 21.8 entire time equal (FTE) training careers, a different two consultants in early literacy and curriculum, and 11.6 non-instructing team in employment ranging from schooling psychologists to library specialists and caretakers.

She explained the task cuts have been required just after the provincial government failed to increase working grants sufficient to offset inflation and an boost to non-training employees salaries.

“Because of to the minimum raise we been given in funding for next 12 months, the board has built the hard selection.” 

The SECPSD encompasses 36 schools from the Manitoba border to Ogema in the west and from the U.S. border to Rocanville in the north.

The 2022 provincial spending plan tabled this spring upped education paying by 1.3 for every cent to $3.8 billion, a significantly cry from the 4.7 per cent college divisions and the Saskatchewan Teachers’ Federation (STF) were inquiring for to keep tempo with inflation and wage boosts for non-instructing employees.

In a past interview, Education and learning Minister Dustin Duncan mentioned the federal government was fully funding the two-for each-cent wage enhance for instructors and downplayed the position inflation would have on university division budgets.

“The issues that are influenced by inflation are fairly small,” he said at the time.

In addition to holding the schooling portfolio, Duncan is the MLA for Weyburn-Large Muddy, which falls in the SECPSD.

When pressed through problem period about education and learning occupation cuts and spending budget shortfalls, Duncan has said this year’s spending plan provided a history degree of paying out on education.

On Tuesday, the Ministry of Education delivered a statement in response to inquiries for this tale.

The statement said SECPSD is projected to receive $95,765,000 for the 2022-23 faculty calendar year, an boost of $1,648,000 from past faculty yr, with enrollment projected to keep on being stable. It also reported SECPSD is qualified to acquire $240,534 from the focused classroom supports fund to employ the service of further instructional assistants. 

“The Ministry of Education has gained South East Cornerstone Public School Division’s spending budget submission,” the assertion stated. “When all the budgets are gained, the ministry will work with university divisions in examining their expenses and monitoring the influence of proposed modifications for classrooms.”

Toth reported the SECPSD has noticed its bills raise astronomically with gas costs, coverage costs and automotive components likely as a result of the roof.

In accordance to the SECPSD’s funds for the 2022/2023 fiscal 12 months, coverage has greater by 36 per cent, gas is up 13 per cent and bus repairs and servicing have elevated by 20 per cent.

Sask. school division cutting 21 teaching jobs, CFO blames inadequate gov’t funding
South East Cornerstone Community College Division is blaming inflation and insufficient govt funding for a $2.5-million deficit. (South East Cornerstone Public School Division)

Toth said the division will dip into its gathered surplus to pay for the $2.5-million deficit, but the surplus is swiftly dwindling — from $22.2 million in fiscal 2020-2021 to $14.4 million at the close of 2023 if the budgeted deficits are realized.

The piggy bank ultimately runs out of coins.– Shelley Toth

Generally that surplus would fork out for exclusive initiatives like setting up a new faculty division place of work, or other cash assignments like a new bus garage, which the division paid for very last yr employing the surplus.

“The piggy bank ultimately operates out of coins, so that’s the concern,” Toth explained.

She reported the choice to reduce teaching and support team will effects students, with classroom ratios escalating to 23.75 college students for every course from 21.75. 

“We would like to maintain as numerous teachers in the classroom as we possibly can,” Toth said, including that school divisions throughout the province are going through the exact same fiscal constraints and likely cuts to staff.

“My understanding is that other people are likely by means of the same workout as we are.”

STF claims govt not listening to school boards

STF president Patrick Maze said a 4.7 for each cent improve to the province’s schooling spending budget would have held programming status quo for school divisions, but that at 1.3 for each cent it’s no surprise that divisions are reducing lecturers and support staff from the payroll.

“With the higher inflation appropriate now I’m type of surprised that the govt is just not listening to the elected leaders who are the faculty board trustees who are all indicating they usually are not going to be equipped to balance budgets with instruction at its recent degrees,” Maze claimed.

“They’re all indicating you will find likely to be cuts and yet authorities appears to be actively playing a wait around and see mindset, which is fairly unsafe when you’re working with our youth and a process that requirements time to set the supports in spot.”