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Minister Ponders Funding Request

By Randy Thoms Aug 31, 2022 | 10:15 AM

Michelle TeGrootenhuis / CC

The province is being asked to increase funding to the Northern and Rural Education Fund.

It is a pot of money totalling about $21.8 million that is doled out to small and northern Ontario school boards.

The Community Schools Alliance, an education advocacy group, wants it increased to $50 million annually.
Education Minister Stephen Lecce says he has received that request.

“While we have received (the) request for more than doubling that ask for one easy payment of $25 million, we will reflect on that…directly to the association,” says Lecce.

In the meantime, Lecce is committing to a moratorium on school closures will remain in place.

Lecce adds education funding has been increased for all school boards this school year.

“When it comes to rural schools and likewise for all schools in this province, we have 650 million additional dollars. We have a $14 billion capital program. I’m working with Minister Kinga Surma. We have a plan for the first time in this province to expedite the delivery of schools in both rural and urban settings. We specifically chose five schools, three of which, if I recall, are in rural settings, deliberately to force the public service to think outside the box of how we can get schools built.”

One of those projects involves the Northwest Catholic District School Board and its expansion of St. Mary school in Fort Frances.



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