June 16, 2017 – For Immediate ReleaseHumboldt, SK
– Horizon School Division's Board of Education has passed a motion to submit its 2017-18 school year budget to the Ministry of Education for approval. This budget distributes $82.3M in revenue to support educational programs and services for approximately 6400 students across 41 schools, ensuring Horizon remains focused on supporting the needs of students, staff and families.
Despite a challenging budget, Horizon School Division will see no layoffs for school-based instructional staff. Any reductions in instructional staff have been managed through attrition. Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten programs across the system have been sustained. Horizon students will continue to benefit from one of the lowest pupil-teacher ratios in the province.
Horizon will see a 9.4% reduction in administrative costs and a 48.4% reduction in governance costs. Further efficiencies in student transportation will be found through the optimization of existing bus routes. The provincial budget included a 14.8% increase in preventative maintenance and renewal (PMR) funding. Total PMR funding of $1.8M will be used to directly enhance the condition of existing school facilities.
Horizon's 2017-18 operating budget results in a $1.3M deficit. Once adjusted for non-cash expenditures and planned capital investments, Horizon will require $3.3M to balance the cash deficit. This will be fully funded from Horizon's internally restricted surplus. Included in planned capital investments is the construction of an administrative facility in Humboldt, SK, which will occur during the 2017-18 and 2018-19 school years. Cost savings annually realized by this project will be invested back into Horizon classrooms to support student learning needs.
"I want to thank our staff and my fellow Trustees for their extensive efforts to create this budget and support the important work being done for students and families across our system," said Jim Hack, Horizon Board of Education Chair. "In a difficult financial year for both the province and the education sector, this budget ensures support for the continued success of students across our system for many years to come."
"This year's budgeting process presented a number of challenges, and I am extremely proud of Horizon's staff and Board for their diligence in this work to support Horizon School Division," said Kevin C. Garinger, Horizon School Division Director of Education. "As our system moves forward, we will continue to find efficiencies in the ways we deliver supports for our students and staff."
Horizon's budget is the result of extensive collaboration with each of its schools and services, seeking to continuously align initiatives with the strategic direction set by the Board of Education. Horizon remains focused on the three pillars of its strategic plan: literacy, assessment and providing safe & caring learning environments for all students and staff.
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