The Calgary Board of Education (CBE) says 300 temporary teaching positions will be cut as they grapple with a $32-million budget shortfall.
“Approximately 300 teachers on temporary contracts will receive notice verbally that their contracts will end as of Jan. 2, 2020,” Chief Superintendent of Schools Christopher Usih said in a statement.
Usih added that the affected teachers will receive their official notice on Thursday.
“These teachers will be placed on the substitute teacher roster Jan. 3, and a number of them may be considered for future temporary contracts,” he added.
“This budget decision impacts many of our schools, classrooms, and students.”
Usih said any other decisions made to help cover the budget gap will be communicated to staff, parents and students as soon as possible.
“Continuity of learning is important, and we are working to minimize disruption to the greatest extent possible.”
Alberta’s Education minister launches a financial audit of the CBE
Amid the CBE’s announcement that 300 jobs were on the cutting block, Alberta’s Education Minister Adriana LaGrange said Wednesday she would be launching an independent financial audit of the CBE in addition to a governance review.
In a statement, LaGrange said that the “reckless misuse of taxpayer dollars” by the CBE “cannot be allowed to continue.”
“This audit and governance review will give government a path forward on helping the CBE prioritize the classroom and find efficiencies elsewhere in its operations.”
“I sympathize with the education professionals, students and parents affected,” LaGrange added. “Unfortunately, this is another example of this board’s inability to appropriately manage its finances and prioritize student learning in its operations.”
“There is no reason that a board with an operating budget of $1.2 billion servicing 130,000 students should be reducing teaching positions and harming our children’s education experience.
“I have been extremely clear that I expect all boards to minimize impacts on front-line staff and teachers, and to prioritize the educational experience of our students,” LaGrange said. “Alberta Education offered the CBE assistance in achieving this, assistance that the board refused.”
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