Monday, September 29, 2014

School District 52's financials could be reduced as the Province claws back strike savings

Like many of British Columbia's School Districts, SD52 probably thought that some of that money that was saved in the District during the course of the labour dispute of the last four months, could make for a small little nest egg to put aside for future use this year.

However, if local administrators and Board members had plans to allocate some of those savings into required work or services around the district, the provincial government is about to deliver some bad news.

Friday the Ministry of Education advised School Districts across British Columbia that they would be reclaiming those savings from the dispute, with what appears to be a plan to fund the 40 dollar a day payment plan for parents that was in place while the schools were closed.

That take it all approach by the provincial government, is one that is not being received well by  a number of school districts across the province.

Many spoke out over the weekend, reminding the Ministry that they have suffered financial losses due to the dispute and that taking all of that available money back is just wrong.

In particular some districts are pointing out that they are now being required to pay for a program (the 40 dollar payment plan) which they had no say in.

Many are fearing that School Districts may struggle to balance their financial picture as result of the requirement to turn over the cash to the province.

In its letter to the School Districts, the Ministry of Education is reported to have stated that any District with a particular financial difficulty linked to the strike will be addressed on a case by case basis.

The claw back of money is just one indication as to how the strike may be over, but the effects from it will be mostly now felt by those in administration across the province.

A situation that leaves the School Districts to deal with the many issues that are left behind as the result of the acrimonious dispute.

Some notes on Friday's announcement from the province can be found below:

Province reclaims money saved during teachers' strike
B. C. looks to claw back all savings from school districts
B. C. school districts ordered to return all strike savings
Two levels of government fighting over teacher strike savings

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