Upper Canada school board passes 2016 budget

BROCKVILLE – The Upper Canada District School Board has passed its budget for the 2016-17 school year.

The final vote was 8-2 during a board meeting tonight (Wednesday, June 1, 2016) in Brockville, Ont.

The $345 million budget, includes over $1 million in staffing cuts – ten teaching positions – as teachers within the board office will be reassigned to the classroom, bumping out low-seniority educational workers.

Roughly six positions will be teachers who assist or coach students alongside other teachers while another four will be head-of-the-classroom positions.

The board says it made the overall cuts of $5.5 million to the budget to deal with dwindling enrollment and fewer dollars coming from the province.

The budget has a $30 million capital component – nearly $11 million of that is for school condition improvement, $8.4 million for the new Kemptville Public School and $1.7 million for Bridgewood Public School.

Trustees John McAllister and Susan Richards tried unsuccessfully to withdraw the $542,000 cut to educational assist (EA) hours and a $29,000 cut to speech language assistants and itinerant student support workers.

The UCDSB budget still has to be send to the province for approval.