According to a press release by Rocky View Schools, "The Rocky View Schools Board of Trustees has approved the 2022/23 operating budget with a focus on providing students with the skills and opportunities they need to learn and succeed."
“Rocky View Schools (RVS) remains committed to providing our 27,000 plus students with the best education possible with an unwavering focus on literacy and numeracy,” said Board Chair, Fiona Gilbert. “In this budget, the Board has focused on its priority of putting funding, supports and resources directly into schools where these can have the greatest positive impact on our students.”
The Board has approved spending $300.9 million with most of the budget going directly to schools in areas such as classroom and school staffing, inclusion supports, specialized pre-Kindergarten learning supports, mental health and wellness for students and staff, and school-based supplies and resources.
RVS will utilize reserves to provide schools with funds to address the disruption in learning and student wellbeing impacts caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Other reserve funds will be used to address inflationary pressures across the organization, to continue our specialized pre-Kindergarten learning programs despite lower grants from government and to maintain funding in schools. Operating reserves at the end of the 2022/23 school year are projected to be 2.4 per cent of the total operating budget, well within the guidance from the government.
“The use of reserve funds to support important school-based programs and initiatives is something the Board feels is necessary to ensure students continue to receive the education and supports we believe they greatly deserve,” said Superintendent of Schools, Greg Luterbach. “This budget is a reflection of the Board’s dedication to our students, parents/guardians and staff to provide the best education RVS can offer.”
As part of RVS’ commitment to division-wide learning of Indigenous ways of knowing and being, this budget will fund the creation of a new Indigenous Education branch within the Learning department to support all students including specific supports for Indigenous students.
“Establishing this branch will ensure we are supporting our schools with a division-wide approach to our commitment to truth and reconciliation,” said Luterbach. “This is an important area of focus for RVS, and we look forward to providing these supports for our classrooms.”
In drawing up the budget, the Board of Trustees and administration were cognizant of its ongoing need for additional school facilities.
“A number of facility enhancements and upgrades related to space constraints are included in this budget to continue to provide our students with the best learning spaces possible while we wait for the approval of new schools,” said Gilbert. “While RVS is creative in maximizing existing space to welcome hundreds of new students each year, the division is in urgent need of permanent solutions such as new schools and modular units.”