Catholic School Board Sets 2019/2020 Budget

Trustees pass operating budget of $274,698,545

It was a challenge, but Brian Beal, Director of Education for the Simcoe Muskoka Catholic District School Board, says the board was able to retain its focus and provide a measure of program security in passing its budget for 2019/2020.

Through retirements, resignations, promotions and finding savings in other areas, all permanent employees who were declared surplus or redundant in the spring, have been recalled to either a permanent position or will be assigned to a long-term occasional position.

“Our employees are our most precious and valuable resource and so it was really important for us to recall those staff who received notices earlier this year when we were dealing with so much uncertainty surrounding our funding.”

– Brian Beal, Director of Education for the Simcoe Muskoka Catholic District School Board

The number of teaching positions has decreased by 26.5 full-time positions (23 secondary and 3.5 elementary) despite a projected increase in enrolment in both the elementary and secondary panels. This decrease in the number of positions is based on the government’s increase in class size averages to 24.5 at the elementary level and 28 at the secondary level.

“There is no doubt that these staffing cuts will impact program and service delivery for our students. “We can’t expect to increase class sizes, decrease staffing levels and still provide our students with the same number, variety and depth of programs and services – the math just doesn’t add up.”

– Carol Corriveau-Truchon, Board Chair

The provincial government did provide attrition funds to offset class size increases. Corriveau-Truchon said that provided some temporary relief for staffing pressures for this upcoming year.

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