UCDSB Trustees Report

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Trustees with the Upper Canada District School Board (UCDSB) met on Wednesday, March 27, 2024. Key items discussed in the public session are as follows.

Preliminary Budget Outlook:

Executive Superintendent of Business Services Jeremy Hobbs presented a budget overview for the 2023-24 school year and a preliminary budget outlook for 2024-25.  He reassured trustees that based on current spending and projections, the Board remains in a healthy financial position thanks in part to consistent government funding and informed decision making by trustees.

In the preliminary budget outlook for 2024-25, Superintendent Hobbs noted that the Grant for Student Needs (GSN) Funding information had not been released by the Ministry of Education, and that the Department’s goal for the update was to provide an appraisal of the conditions under which the 2024-25 budget will be developed. He detailed various external factors that may contribute to tighter financial realities for school boards in coming years but noted that the Board can expect to see continued government investments in education and expects a continued balanced budget through 2024-25.

GSN Funding and related documents are expected to be released by the Ministry of Education in April, and Finance staff will prepare a draft budget for Trustee consideration early June 2024.

UCDSB Parent Involvement Committee PRO Grant Initiatives:

In February 2024, the UCDSB Parent Involvement Committee (PIC) reviewed proposed initiatives and approved funding for Parents Reaching Out (PRO) Grants for the 2023-24 school year.

PRO Grants are provided by the Ministry of Education to support projects that focus on improving access and opportunities for parents to participate and engage fully in their children’s learning. A total of $51,000 in funding was allocated to the UCDSB for use for this purpose in the 2023-24 school year.

Bill Loshaw, UCDSB Superintendent of Schools, noted that approved proposals align with Ministry requirements, and that many also support the priorities of the UCDSB Director’s Workplan.

Approved projects include family literacy and EQAO math nights, discussions on social media/online safety, as well as Indigenous family drum circles and earth day festivities.

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