huge program cuts from freeze in staff hiring

 In Education policy, Public Education News

Ford government recommends Ontario school boards freeze hiring ahead of upcoming budget

Memo to school boards asks them to ‘exercise prudence in making hiring decisions’

The provincial government has recommended that Ontario school boards implement a hiring freeze until the details of the upcoming budget are solidified.

“I am writing to you today to recommend that school boards exercise prudence in making hiring decisions in light of the upcoming Ontario budget and the recent consultation on class size and hiring practices,” said Nancy Naylor, deputy minister of education, in a memo sent to school board heads on Thursday.

“School boards are advised to defer the annual processes of filling vacancies for retirements and other leaves related to teachers and other staff until the minister of education provides an update to the sector on or before March 15th,” Naylor continued.

The memo comes as the government reviews feedback obtained during recent consultations on class sizes in Ontario. Changes could include the removal of the cap on kindergarten and primary grade class numbers.

School boards have previously expressed fears that they could be hit by funding cuts as the Progressive Conservatives look to dig the province out of a $13.5-billion deficit.

The provincial government is also considering eliminating full-day kindergarten after the 2019-2020 school year, though it has committed to keeping some form of “full-day learning” in place. It recently completed consultations on the matter.

Finance Minister Vic Fedeli has not revealed when the provincial budget will be released, though it generally occurs some time in the spring.

Lucas Powers · CBC News · 

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