August 13, 2020—TORONTO–While acknowledging the $50 million funding in support of investments to HVAC systems, the OCSTA is deeply concerned and disappointed with the government’s announcement regarding use of School Board reserves to address the increased costs associated with the re-opening of schools. Local school trustees and their dedicated staff have worked prudently and very hard to establish these reserves in support of the various unique needs and priorities of their communities. Beyond the obvious responsibility of the Provincial Government to adequately fund all costs associated with school re-opening, the decision promotes significant inequities among school boards and the students they serve.
“School Boards have worked tirelessly to plan for a school re-opening that places the safety and well-being of students and staff as the number one priority. They recognize the many and complex issues with regard to the pandemic and school re-opening. In this spirit, we regret that such an unprecedented and important decision was made without communication or collaboration of the OCSTA and other Provincial Education Associations,” said Patrick Daly, President of the Ontario Catholic School Trustees’ Association.
“We know that School Boards will continue to do what is in the best interest of their students and staff. Saying that, the challenges associated with the hiring of additional teachers and other staff as well as securing sufficient and adequate student accommodations cannot be overstated.”
The Ontario Catholic School Trustees’ Association is the provincial voice for publicly funded Catholic education. Founded in 1930, OCSTA represents the interests of Catholic school boards that collectively educates approximately 600,000 students in Ontario, from Junior Kindergarten to Grade 12.
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