LILLEY: Over the past 20 years, the school’s staff has increased by 25%, while enrollment has remained the same

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dated: 2022-11-25 18:17:45 .

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Despite claims that education budgets have been cut, the numbers tell a different story

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November 25, 2022 • 1 hour ago • 3 minutes read 10 comments Ontario Education Minister Stephen Lecce speaks to reporters at Queen’s Park in Toronto on Sunday, November 20, 2022, after an attempted deal between the government and CUPE was thwarted strike at school. Photo by Chris Young/HE CANADIAN PRESS

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One of the endless stories is that the Ontario government is cutting funding for education. But is it true?

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Not by any measurable standard, either money or human resources.

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In the midst of a battle with CUPE over the strike and contract negotiations, Education Minister Stephen Lecce posted an interesting graphic on social media. It showed that student enrollments have declined over almost 20 years, while staff numbers have increased dramatically.

It wasn’t shocking to me – it shouldn’t be shocking to anyone who keeps track of the actual numbers. I’ve reported many times how student-teacher ratios have fallen over the years, despite teacher unions saying class sizes are bigger than ever.

So what is the truth?

The numbers behind this table, which was tweeted by Lecce and provided to the Sun by the Ministry of Education, tell a shocking story. The figures also dispel the notion that provincial or school boards are shrinking.

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Between the school year 2002/2003. and the 2021/22 school year. enrollment increased by only 1,029 from 1,997,479 to 1,998,508. However, the total workforce increased by 46,369 from 182,486 educators to 228,855.

This is a shocking 25% increase in the number of employees, while student enrollment stagnates.

Observed by professional groups, the number of teachers increased by 16,968 from 116,040 to 133,008. The number of directors and deputy directors increased from 7,371 to 7,810. The general group, called educators, grew by 49 percent from 59,075 to 88,037.

We know that many of these assistant educators are in the category of early childhood and educational assistants, which has grown tremendously over the years.

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You cannot increase the workforce and decrease funding for education at the same time. As with any large organization or effort, personnel costs are the single largest item, and the same is true for education.

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For anyone who claims that education funding went up under the Liberals but went down under Doug Ford’s PC government, think again. When Ford took office, there were only 125,000 teachers – now there are nearly 8,000.

The budget for education also increased significantly during this period.

According to the province’s public accounts, the education budget was $9 billion in 2002-03, or $13.5 billion in today’s dollars according to the Bank of Canada inflation calculator. Today, the education budget is $32 billion, up from $29 billion in 2018 when Ford took office.

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We went from $6,758 per student to $16,011 per student over 19 years. Despite the rhetoric of various unions, including the teachers unions currently negotiating a new contract, there is no way to legitimately claim that education funding has been cut or that it has been cut.

  1. Lecce calls the attempt to reach an agreement with educators ‘win-win-win’

  2. LILLEY: Students win as CUPE blinks and ends strike for Monday

A legitimate question arises as to whether all the money allocated for education is spent properly and sensibly.

As the education budget has more than doubled in the past 19 years, the student-teacher ratio — excluding ECE or EA — has fallen from 17.2 students per teacher to 15 students per teacher. Are all these teachers actually in the classroom? Are some of those teachers well paid to do other work?

Many questions are being asked about how the budget for education is allocated and whether these funds could not be used better. However, the claim that the budget for education will be reduced is not supported by either facts or figures.

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Source: torontosun.com

LILLEY: Over the past 20 years, the school’s staff has increased by 25%, while enrollment has remained the same

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Source https://canadatoday.news/ca/lilley-over-the-past-20-years-school-staffing-has-increased-by-25-while-enrollment-has-stayed-the-same-162495/

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