TVDSB Trustees approve $975-million budget for 2018-19

Posted On Thursday June 21, 2018

Wednesday, June 20, 2018 – TVDSB Trustees approved a $975-million budget Tuesday night – allowing $50 million in new spending over last year to hire more than 200 permanent staff and provide significant support services for students. 

“This year’s budget provides additional teaching and support staff, as well as program resources, to give the Board the tools to meet the growing needs of our students in their classrooms,” said Chair Matt Reid.

More than 90 new Educational Assistants will be hired, along with many new positions in the areas of speech pathology, psychology and social work services. While more than 17 new guidance teachers will work with Grade 7 and 8 students across the district, about 30 new teaching positions have been created to support English as a Second Language (ESL) programming in elementary and secondary schools to help accommodate a recent surge in enrolment. 

Trustees also approved 10 new teaching positions for rural and low enrolment secondary schools, along with more resources for the Board’s Human Resources department, including its first Diversity and Inclusion Officer.  

In addition, Trustees approved a range of other budget initiatives to support international education, robotics, technology, music, the arts and special education. 

“Our system will definitely be more robust and responsive with these additional resources since the majority of staff will be in classrooms working directly with our students,” Associate Superintendent Jeff Pratt told Trustees.

While a projected deficit of $2.3 million will be covered by the Board’s accumulated surplus of $27 million, Superintendent of Business Christine Beal cautioned that Thames Valley faces some risks and challenges in the years ahead.

School bus transportation continues to be an area where costs are expected to exceed provincial funding by about $2 million next year. Provincial funding for special education programming is also expected to fall short by about $3 million in the coming school year.

In contrast to several years of declining enrolment, TVDSB is currently experiencing an upsurge in enrolment caused by new Canadians moving to the London area as well as migration from the Greater Toronto Area – a trend that is expected to continue, said Beal.

“While this change has brought diversity and new opportunities to our students and schools, it will require increased resources for our ESL programs and other supports.”

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