December 14, 2018 Message to Members
BC Funding Model Review
As many of you know, the BC Ministry of Education has been consulting with K-12 stakeholders to review the province’s public education funding model. The current funding model has been in place for more than 15 years, and can no longer reflect the social, cultural and demographic trends in our province. Advances in technology have had a profound effect on instruction and student learning. The job market has shifted, as have the skills that students need to prepare them for their post-graduation life. Our public education system has recognized that specific learning needs can best be supported, and success enhanced, within a revised curriculum.
The funding model review process emerged based on the 2018 realities of education in BC. The goal of the funding model review is to ensure that the allocation of funding is equitable across BC’s 60 Boards of Education, with a focus on strong outcomes and equitable access to opportunities for all students. We share the goal of providing the best supports and services for all students, and I have been involved in the consultation process on behalf of the BCPVPA, both on the Board level and during my time as President. During the initial stages of the review process, stakeholder perspectives were gathered from School Districts, sector partners including the BCPVPA, parents’ groups, teachers’ groups and non-profit groups with an interest in education. You can read those submissions here bit.ly/K-12FMRFeedback.
An independent review panel met with School Districts around the province, and while the feedback was broad and reflective of the different needs of the 60 Districts, 16 themes emerged including Special Education, Collective Agreements, Targeted Funding for Indigenous Students and Unique School District Features: read about the findings here bit.ly/K-12FMRPanel. Government has been in the process of reviewing the panel’s recommendations, and options for transitioning to a new funding model will be released shortly before or after the holiday break.
Changes that affect the operation of our schools can be high on the list of things that keep school leaders awake at night. We expect that there will be many questions from our members once the results of the funding review are released, and we will be here to help you to navigate the information and understand the context for your schools. I will be involved in a feedback process with government, and I am committed to taking your questions and concerns forward to ensure that we are continuing an effective dialogue.
As we move towards the end of the year, I wish you and your families all the very best. I want to personally thank you for being passionate advocates for public education, and for creating a positive and inclusive learning environment every day in your schools. I’m proud to be part of this community of leaders, and to represent your voice.