February 19, 2017

The spin on public education funding

A new budget is coming to British Columbia on Tuesday and Christy Clark will smile, and hope that voters will smile too.

But wait a minute... All is not as Christy would have us believe. Just a few months ago we heard that "110 million extra dollars" would go "to education this year." This year meaning 2016. The idea suggested in the the remarks of MLAs and the Minister of Education himself, was that 110 million new dollars would find their way into public education in 2016 (exclusive of capital spending) over funding in 2015.

Sounded like a great deal at the time.

In truth,  Christy Clark's Liberals didn't mention that 48 million dollars of that extra money would actually go to private schools. Nor did they mention that 36 million dollars of that extra money would to to "other partners" which included public libraries. Now let's be clear: private schools are not really public education. And as nice and wonderful as public libraries might be, they aren't really public education either.

What sounded like a great addition to the funding of public education in this province in 2016, turned out to be an additional 28 million dollars. That was less than a 1% increase over the previous year, and that, in truth, was actually a cut because inflation was 1.9% at the time. Through these revelations, Christy kept smiling.

Then there's the 3 million dollars Christy Clark and her Liberals spent fighting the BCTF ~ all the way to the Supreme Court of Canada. 3 million dollars of our tax dollars spent... for nothing. Maybe Christy and her Liberals should pay the 3 million back to the taxpayers of BC.

So what happens to public education on budget day 2017? What will the numbers really mean for schools and our children? Will the numbers even add up? Christy will be smiling of course.

There's an election coming and we have a chance to send a message.

Get involved. Get informed. Vote on May 9th.

And aren't we all just a wee bit tired of that dumb smile?

Copyright 2017 by Jim Murray.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks for your comments!