As announced in Budget 2010, B.C. school districts will receive $4.663 billion in operating grants next year, a $112-million increase over this year. Average per-pupil funding is also expected to increase by an estimated $105 from $8,196 this year to $8,301 in 2010- 11 - a record high.
The increase to operating funding includes $54 million to fully fund the teachers' wage settlement and $58 million to fully fund the implementation of full day Kindergarten. The per-pupil funding amount has increased by an estimated $2,039 since 2000-01.
School districts project there will be 544,223 full-time equivalent (FTE) students at B.C. public schools in 2010 11, an increase of 2,306 FTE students. This increase is due primarily to the implementation of full day Kindergarten, which resulted in an additional 7,440 FTE students.
Fifty-five of 60 districts will begin offering full day Kindergarten in September 2010. School districts are projecting 5,976 fewer students in grades 1 through 12. School districts facing significant cumulative enrolment decline will receive nearly $13 million in supplemental funding. Each school district will receive at least as much funding in 2010-11 as they did last year.
A technical review committee, comprised of school district superintendents, secretary-treasurers and ministry staff, reviews the funding formula each year to ensure it is equitable and current. Based on the committee's recommendations, the Province has updated the funding formula to allocate the current labour settlement supplements through the existing population-based model, which is currently how the majority of funding is allocated. This change ensures equity across the province.
In addition to the increase in operating funding next year, $110 million in annual facilities grant funding will be made available to school districts between now and March 31, 2011. School districts will also share $51 million in CommunityLINK funding to support the province's most vulnerable students.
The government is working to make B.C. the best-educated, most literate jurisdiction on the continent. Since 2000-01, the Province has increased funding to B.C. public schools by more than $1.3 billion: $919 million in operating grants and $407 million in one-time grants. To date, the number of students in the system has declined by more than 56,000.
Province-wide enrolment and funding information for 2010-11 can be viewed at: http://www.bced.gov.bc.ca/k12funding/