The Rocky View School (RVS) Board of Trustees heard an update on the 2024-2025 budget at the latest trustee meeting for the upcoming school year.

Annually, school divisions are required to submit their budgets for the upcoming school year to Alberta Education by May 31st. Since the Board and Board Budget Committee received the funding profile from the province government in mid-March, they have been working on developing the 2024–2025 RVS budget.

In the funding profile, student funding will be increased by 2.7 per cent for the next school year but does not include funding for capital maintenance and renewal projects. RVS school division is projecting an increase of 2.6 per cent in student enrollment next school year.

Budget priorities were set by the Board to aid in directing the division budget's development. These include funding schools directly to help students learn, supporting the health of students and staff, improving the facilities and technological infrastructure, and setting aside 0.5 to 1 percent for an operating reserve.

The update provided highlights of what will be proposed to the Board. Here are some of the highlights according to RVS:

  • 92 per cent of instructional funding is allocated directly to schools through a school allocation formula that remains focused on providing support directly to schools. Class size guidelines remain at the current level as do learning support teacher time, literacy support and student emotional support allocations, among other school-based supports
  • To help achieve the desired reserve target, $500,000 will be unspent in the budgets for Education Centre departments, ensuring all instructional funding is used to support instruction.
  • Schools and departments at the Education Centre have developed their budgets based on the funding allocated and have submitted these to the Board Budget Committee for review.

On May 30, the draft 2024–2025 budget will be presented to the Board for approval.

Also at the latest meeting, the trustees heard an update on how their bussing services have gone so far this year. According to RVS, the transportation department has been responsible for safely fulfilling the daily busing needs of more than 12,890 (up from 12,663 in January) students during the 2023/24 school year. Currently, RVS runs 269 standard bus routes daily, serving an average of 49 students per day.

The Transportation Department is dealing with growing contractor costs related to driver salaries, fleet maintenance, and the purchase of new buses. It is anticipated that these difficulties could increase if rider eligibility is increased. Back in a Board of Trustees meeting in January it was presented that RVS could see a jump of as many as 2400 additional students entering school buses within the next two years.

According to RVS, there are a number of new projects aimed at enhancing family communication and transportation services. Airdrie holds one of the largest riderships in RVS.

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