Waterloo Region, ON — Trustees of the Waterloo Catholic District School Board have received the Board’s $292.1 million 2018-19 school year budget. The budget vote is scheduled for 6 p.m., Monday, June 18, 2018.
The 2018-19 budget anticipates enrolment will continue to increase in both elementary and secondary schools in the upcoming year. This increased enrolment, along with a number of targeted provincial investments and funding for provincially-negotiated labour agreements, accounts for the significant year-over-year funding change for the Board. The planned expenditures are based on the Ontario Government’s Grants for Student Needs, and incorporate the aforementioned investments, along with new funding to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and continued supports to reach provincial student achievement goals.
* The overall budget is as follows:
o Total Operating: $273.3 M (+ $20.7 million)
o Total Capital: $188 M (- $0.4 million)
o Total Operating & Capital: $292.1 M (+ $20.3 million)
* Key focus areas of the budget include:
o Ensuring students with special needs continue to receive the support and assistance they need to succeed. To that end, the proposed budget builds on the complement of workers established in the 2017-18 school year, by adding a new multi-disciplinary team of experts and other support workers focused on special education.
o Ensuring instructional practices support high levels of achievement. New instructional coaches have been added to the budget. These specialized staff will support the use of best practices in schools across the Region.
o Earlier identification of graduation and career pathways for students. A new team of guidance counsellors has been added to assist with this goal, and will work with students starting in Grade 7.
o Ensuring our newcomers are supported as they transition into our school system. Additional ESL teachers have been included in the budget to assist with this important integration process.
o Increasing levels of technology in schools, as well as replacing old hardware, to ensure students can compete in an ever-changing world, following graduation.
* During the coming fiscal year, the board will closely monitor areas of pressure and create further alignment between risk areas and available funding. The budget plan aligns with the priorities identified for the next generation of the Multi-year Strategic Plan, which will be launched in the fall of 2018.
* The budget package presented to the Board of Trustees carries on an established staff practice of presenting the board’s financial information in a transparent and easily understandable format. Last year — for the sixth consecutive year — the board received the Association of School Business Officials International (ASBO) Meritorious Budget Award (MBA) for excellence in presentation of the 2017-18 school year budget. The WCDSB is the only school board in Ontario to receive this prestigious award.
“While our enrolment continues to grow — increasing by an average of 3% per year over the past four years — with growth comes a need for additional teaching staff, learning resources, technology investments, and a carefully managed approach to adding temporary accommodations at many of our schools. This is challenging, and I am very pleased to report that the proposed budget is balanced, meets all legislative and regulatory requirements, fulfills contractual obligations, and addresses local priorities in the areas of improving graduation rates, encouraging well-being for students and staff, implementing a new pastoral plan, promoting equity throughout the system, ensuring ongoing investment in 21st century technologies, and promoting global competencies for students.”
~~ Shesh Maharaj, Chief Financial Officer
The Waterloo Catholic District School Board, representing more than 96,000 Catholic school supporters, operates 49 schools and five adult education facilities, serving more than 40,000 elementary, secondary and continuing education students in Waterloo Region — continuing a 182-year tradition of quality, inclusive, faith-based education. Follow us on Twitter: @WCDSBNewswire – #WCDSBAwesome.
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For more information, please contact:
Shesh Maharaj — Chief Financial Officer
(519) 578-3660 | Shesh.Maharaj@wcdsb.ca