Update school funding model
Re Parents ask developers to help crowded schools, Oct. 30 I read Toronto Star reporter Andrea Gordon’s story this morning with great enthusiasm. Finally, someone is dealing with this issue.
The fundamental issue is that the funding model for all public schools is inadequate and long out of date. The arrogance of successive Liberal governments to deprive the TDSB of millions of dollars of education development charges (EDC) for political reasons is inexcusable. The restriction on EDC for land acquisition only must be amended to allow for capital improvements to schools. Certainly for the TDSB, the renovation, expansion and redevelopment of existing schools is a more realistic response to growth than attempting to assemble land for new schools at costs that likely exceed the construction costs of the school.
The EDC restriction to land acquisition is also problematic in the greenfield development areas of the GTA. In Halton (Oakville), new growth has dramatically increased the need for new schools, but without EDC funding for new school construction, the municipalities must beg province for grants — a flawed process that does not keep up with demand.
This has to stop and should be a major political issue in the next provincial election, driven by the media. Gordon Petch, Oakville