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ERIC Number: ED538938
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Feb
Pages: 7
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
Budget Update: "Budget 2011" Not Enough to Resolve Funding Crisis. BCTF Research Report. Section V. 2011-EF-02
White, Margaret
British Columbia Teachers' Federation
Each budget year, the Ministry of Education responds to concerns about chronic underfunding of public education by asserting that the ministry is providing its "highest funding ever" during a sustained period of declining student enrolment. This assertion of the "highest funding ever" continues in "Budget 2011," ignoring the evidence of a systemic structural shortfall in education funding. Nor does "Budget 2011" acknowledge that education is receiving a diminishing share of the provincial budget. The percentage of the provincial budget going to the K-12 education system fell steadily from 19.67% in 2001-2002 to 15.34% in 2009-2010. If funding for K-12 education in 2010-2011 was restored to the 2001-2002 ratio of 19.67%, an additional $1.5 billion in funding would be available for public education. The British Columbia (BC) Ministry of Education continues to justify current funding levels by noting the decline in student enrolment over the last decade, yet education and population statistics clearly indicate a trend of increasing enrolment in the coming years. The number of FTE students enrolled in public schools increased by 2,595.6 FTE students between 2009-2010 and 2010-2011. Kindergarten enrolment is projected to increase by almost 7,000 students over the next 10 years, from 36,003 students in 2010-2011 to 42,933 in 2019-2020. A 2010 report by BC Stats forecasts population growth for children and youth up to the age of 15 over the next 10 years. Nor is a period of declining enrolment a justification for eroding learning support for students. Other provinces in Canada also experienced declining enrolment in the last decade but did not make drastic cuts to numbers of educators in the way BC did. The BC government could have chosen to use a period of declining enrolment as an opportunity to address the unmet needs in the education system by offering smaller classes, clearing up wait lists for assessments, and increasing learning support for special needs and other unique student groups. (Contains 3 tables, 1 chart and 30 footnotes.)
British Columbia Teachers' Federation. 100-550 West 6th Avenue, Vancouver, BC V5Z 4P2, Canada. Tel: 800-663-9163; Tel: 604-871-2283; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: British Columbia Teachers' Federation (BCTF) (Canada)
Identifiers - Location: Canada