School board faces challenges with declining enrolment and fiscal restraints
Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board is projecting a budget shortfall of up to $3 million for the 2011-2012 school year. During recent weeks, senior administration has been reviewing organizational needs, structures and projected enrolment while developing a 2011-2012 budget that is compliant with the Education Act.
The Board continues to struggle with the combined effect of declining enrolment and provincial government fiscal restraint. Over the past four years, enrolment in HPEDSB has declined by almost 2,000 students.
With salaries and benefits representing 80% of the budget, staff reductions are the only means to generate extensive and ongoing savings to assist in reducing a projected deficit of this size. The Budget Committee met during a closed session yesterday afternoon to discuss reductions throughout the organization.
Employee groups that will be affected include the following:
• school administration
• central office staff and administration
• school operations and maintenance staff
• school support staff, both teaching and non-teaching
Initial discussions were held at this time due to contractual obligations and timelines. The impact on employees has been shared with employee group leaders. This was the first step in a series of conversations and decisions that will occur over the next few months.
It is expected that the Grants for Student Needs (GSN) funding for 2011-2012 will be announced on March 31, 2011. An updated financial picture will be available in April once the funding has been analyzed and grant calculations completed. Public Budget Committee meetings will follow, with an anticipated final budget approval by the end of June 2011.
The Board appreciates and understands the need for respectful conversations to occur. Senior administration is committed to working with employee group leaders in order to communicate decisions in a timely manner.
Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board serves more than 15,700 students each day at 46 elementary and eight secondary schools. Supporting student achievement is the goal of close to 1,900 teaching and support staff who, in addition to the contributions of caring volunteers and community partners, provide the best opportunity for students to learn. The district covers a wide geographical area of 7,221 square kilometres bordered by Maynooth to the north, Deseronto to the east, Prince Edward County to the south and Quinte West to the west.
For information, please contact:
Kerry Donnell, Communications Officer, 613.966.1170 or 1 800 267.4350, extension 2354, [email protected]