Western School Division (WSD) is projected to receive an additional 4.4 percent from the Provincial Funding of Schools program in comparison to the current 2018/19 fiscal year. This roughly adds up to $474,300.
"There were a couple of things that drove that increase. One was a substantial increase in our student numbers, we had about a 4.6 percent increase in student enrolment," says Secretary-Treasurer Carl Pedersen. He says the equalization funding is the other factor that added to this jump in funding.
"Overall in light of things and in light of the total provincial funding increase, I think we did fairly well."
Most divisions in the region are seeing anywhere from a two percent decrease to 2 percent increase in their funding.
Pedersen adds, "we have a lot of students rolling in the door and so we need those funds to keep teachers in the classroom, and so class sizes don't get out of hand, and so on, and the support people to go along with it. It certainly costs us more to run the division with those extra students in it."
He says while they wait for the new school to be approved, they have to be able to support the students as best as possible, so the funding "gets swallowed up pretty quickly."
In the meantime, the school board is continuing to work on the 2019/20 budget.
"This year we're not doing a budget exhibition, we're doing more of a public budget meeting and showing where we are with the funds, and how your tax dollars are spent, and so on."
The public presentation will take place at 7:00 p.m. on February 27 at the WSD Office in Morden.