School board approves layoffs to help trim $1.4 million from budget

VERNON - The Vernon school district is axing expenditures across the board to combat a $1.4 million shortfall.

Preliminary approval has been given to School District 22's budget for the 2014-2015 school year and the plan shows cuts to library staffing, special education, administration and transportation routes. 

Board chair Bill Turanski said a staff restructuring process is underway to help balance the budget.

“These cost reductions will result in some reallocation of staff,” Turanski said. “For some staff members it will translate into reduced hours of work while for others it will result in layoffs."

The district is predicting a slight increase in enrollment at the elementary school level in September. That’s good news because school districts are funded on a per student basis, however, with the rising costs of pensions, workers’ compensation rates, B.C. Hydro rates and more, the district is hoping the Ministry of Education will review the funding formula.

“The board continues to be concerned about the devastating annual underfunding of the education system by the government,” Turanski said.

Breakdown of approved expenditure reductions for the 2014-2015 school year

District office expenditures: $133,667

Reduction in transportation routes: $125,000

Reduction in maintenance expenditures: $84,306

Reduction in library staffing: $96,987

Reduction in school clerical staffing: $61,475

Reduction in school vice-principal staffing: $64, 500

Reduction in school supply budgets: $64,155

Restructuring special education support staff: $342,117

Reallocation of anticipated year end surplus: $517,279

Total expenditure reductions: $1,489,486

To contact the reporter for this story, email Charlotte Helston at or call 250-309-5230. To contact the editor, email or call 250-718-2724.

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