At yesterday’s public board meeting, the Board of Trustees approved a balanced budget of $940 million for 2012-13. Among the highlights of the approved budget:
- 116 new permanent full-time positions, including 54 new permanent full-time teaching positions and 55 permanent full-time support staff positions (many of which are educational assistants) for schools;
- Increased funding to schools;
- Significant increase in support for special needs students; and,
- Targeted funds to support English Language Learners, First Nations, Métis and Inuit students and socially vulnerable populations.
“The Board appreciates the three year funding commitment from the Province, but it was still a bit challenging because our operating reserves are nearly exhausted,” said Dave Colburn, Chair of the Edmonton Public School Board. “Despite these challenges, we were pleased to have approved a balanced budget focused on the best educational outcomes for students.”
Among notices of motion Trustees put forward at the end of the meeting was a motion to have the Board’s policy review committee examine policies related to student assessment. This motion will be discussed at the next board meeting, which will take place in September 2012.