My Math teachers always told me to show my work. It’s ironic that the Calgary Board of Education trustees don’t expect the Administration to show their work.
The one vote the trustees had in regards to the 2011-12 operating budget failed when Trustee Bazinet proposed that administration come back to the June 28th meeting with figures showing which administration positions were cut. Trustee Taylor was the only other trustee to support the motion, although they all said that they would like to see this in next year’s budget.
This budget is FULL of grey areas with statements made and figures given that are not explained or backed up. Even Chair Pat Cochrane was quoted in a media report as saying that maybe the budget was a little too cryptic and that some numbers should be built out further. We certainly hope that Trustees and administration will follow through and put more detailed figures into next year’s budget. Unfortunately that will not help our classrooms in 2011-2012. I wonder if trustees will feel comfortable voting in favor of a cryptic budget?
Some great questions were asked and some clear answers were given as well. You can view a breakdown of the questions asked on our website. Director Wayne Braun, who handled most of the budget questions, was very knowledgeable and had few difficulties in answering them. The most disappointing answer provided was in response to a question about what the plan for the future is, since the CBE is predicting major shortfalls again for the next two years. The basic response was that more funding was needed. No options for balancing future budgets.
So, it looks like we will be going through this same situation again, just as we did last year. We hope that the board of trustees and the administration will honor their commitments to have greater stakeholder engagement throughout the next school year, so that we can all work together to find creative solutions to these problems. Our students deserve no less.