· 12 FTE additional EAs.
Being able to hire more staff to serve your children and accommodate our growing student enrolment is good news, but we find little reason to celebrate. The increased revenue brings us back up to funding levels comparable to the 2016-17 fiscal year, before $54 million was cut from the education sector.
You may recall that our board was faced with some very difficult budget decisions for the 2017-18 school year—the toughest that I remember in my years as a trustee. My colleagues and I are committed to approving balanced budgets, and a significant realignment of resources was necessary to balance the books after such dramatic cuts in revenue. Because of what our school division went through years ago, it is easy to empathize with decisions other school divisions across the province are making to balance their books.
Since those cuts, the Government of Saskatchewan has restored funding. However, costs due to enrolment growth, contractual salary increases and inflationary increases have consumed revenue increases, plus some. Therefore, we are unable to restore service levels and programming.
On behalf of my fellow trustees, I thank you for choosing Catholic education and entrusting us with the education of your children. I'm proud of the good work we are able to do as a school division, and I know there is much more we can accomplish if resources afforded us the opportunity. We will continue to advocate for your children and for greater investment in education in Saskatchewan. In the meantime, we will continue our good work together.
For more detail on our budget, visit https://www.gscs.ca/about/budget/Pages/default.aspx
God bless, and enjoy your summer!
Diane Boyko, Board of Education Chair
On behalf of Greater Saskatoon Catholic Schools' Board of Education