There will be an extra $2 million to hire teachers for the North East School Division.
At a board meeting Jan. 24, the North East School Division voted to earmark the money from its unrestricted surplus fund to fund eight additional teachers over the next three years. The teachers will support small schools and schools that need extra supports for First Nations, special needs and English as a second language students.
“Our thinking is,” said Don Rempel, the division’s director of education, “as there might be tough times ahead because of the financial condition of the province, that we would designate that surplus we’ve accumulated over the last 10 years from efficiencies we’ve found as a school division, that we’re going to set that aside to support that additional allocation to our staff.”
The money will supplement what the division gets for the province to hire teachers.
School days set
The next school year’s school days and vacations have been set.
Students will spend 186 days in school in the 2017-18 year, starting the day after Labour Day, Sept. 5. Vacations will take place on Oct. 9, Nov. 13 and 24, Dec. 25 to Jan 2, Feb. 19 to 23, March 30, April 2 to 6 and 27, and May 18. Student-led conferences will be held Nov. 21 to 22 and April 24 to 25. The last day will be June 27.
“The big difference is a short Christmas. That’s the biggest difference,” Rempel said.
An alternative calendar will be used for White Fox School, which has longer school days but shorter years so that elementary-aged students can be dropped off at the school before high school-aged students go on to Nipawin’s L.P. Miller. That calendar could also be used for Gronlid Central School, depending on feedback from parents. Students will be in class for 175 days, starting Sept. 5 and ending June 20, with additional vacations Sept. 22, Oct. 27, Jan. 19, March 16, April 20 and May 18.
Answer still no for lawsuit
There may be new members on the board but the answer was the same: the division won’t be giving the Public Schools of Saskatchewan more money to fund a lawsuit about government funding for non-Catholic students in Catholic schools.
The division had committed money for the lawsuit for five years. In May 2015, it voted to stop contributing money beyond that point.