What constitutes administration expenses?

This question was submitted by Trina Hurdman on April 18 to be asked at the public board meeting on April 19, 2011:

On page 14 of the 2010-2011 budget document, it states that administration expenses are 3.6% of the total budget.

However, on page 27, it states that Finance and Business Services are 5.3% of the budget, Human Resources are 2.1%, and the Office of the Chief Superintendent is 1.1% which totals 8.5% of the budget. The CBE has also made it clear that the new administration building lease and the Board of Trustees are included in administration expenses.

In the interest of transparency, will you provide a detailed breakdown of everything that is included as Administration expenses and if there are parts of human resources and business and financial services that do not count towards administration, can you please explain which parts are not included and why?

Response by Chief Superintendent Johnson:

Ms. Hurdman, thank you for the inquiry. We are aware of your question and will undertake to provide an answer on the CBE website by Thursday. We will be providing this information to you in writing as soon as possible after this meeting, Thursday, we believe, and we will read this into the corporate record at a public meeting when the answer is available, so the next public meeting.

On Thursday, April 21 at 5:38pm, the following was received:

Good Afternoon Ms. Hurdman,

Further to the public meeting Tuesday, April 19, 2011 the board is diligently working to provide an answer to your public inquiry. Please know that their response is still forthcoming and will be provided to you in writing (via email) and posted to the website as soon as possible. The answer will also be read into the corporate record at the public meeting on Tuesday May 3, 2011 as board procedures stipulate.

Danielle Doll, BA
Office of the Corporate Secretary
Calgary Board of Education

One thought on “What constitutes administration expenses?

  1. It is useful I think to look at the visible administration of downtown offices, the more hidden admin of satellite offices and then they pretty well hidden admin of the travelling staff who are paid very well to do consulting and who don’t have classes. We also need the board to be transparent about how many teachers in the system do not teach full class loads and why not. Most of those not teaching full class loads are ‘admin’ in some way, heads of committees or departments, one of several levels of ‘admin’ in the school. I find it odd that doctors when they aspire to moving up do more complicated surgeries, lawyers do more difficult legal cases but for some reason in education we’ve made it so to move ‘up’ you move out of teaching. This is not good for students who may be losing some of their best teachers to ‘admin’ roles. It is also not good for teachers who are no longer using those teaching skills they took years to develop. And last but financially most vital, it is not good at all for the public who has paid a lot of money to get the best possible use of resources. The best possible use of a great teacher is as a teacher. This means admin might be wiser to hire from outside the profession and not base the salary on teaching grids at all. And it certainly does mean that highly trained and skilled teachers should not be used as caretakers, secretaries, hallway monitors, club directors or cafeteria supervisors. We can hire other people for those things. We don’t ask surgeons to amuse the child in the waiting room. We don’t ask corporate lawyers to clean the halls. For value for your bucks, first, we need to fund education better, via property tax, and second, we need to let teachers teach.

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