Catholic board approves 2018-19 budget


The Northwest Catholic District School Board approved the 2018-19 budget at its regular monthly meeting held Saturday in Sioux Lookout.
The capital budget approved at the meeting totalled just over $13.7 million.
The board also approved the 2018-19 operating budget deficit of just over $341,000, with a compliance deficit of close to $453,000 that currently is pending approval by the Ministry of Education.
This year’s operating budget continues to have a strong emphasis on Catholic education, according to the board.
The board also plans on continuing with updates to religious education resources, as well as offering support for teachers to obtain the Religious Education Additional Qualification courses.
It also is focusing on the continued expansion of the French Immersion program, and the adding of Grade 4 to Sacred Heart School and St. Francis School.
Staffing changes for this year include the addition of a behavioral lead, speech-language pathologist, and a social worker.
As well, an additional child and youth worker will be hired at St. Patrick’s School, which will be funded through the Multi Disciplinary Team funding that came from the ministry.
There also will be three full-time student achievement teachers hired and shared between Sacred Heart School, St. Joseph’s School, St. Michael’s School, and St. Francis School.
The ministry has a focus on the Renewed Math Strategy that will continue into the 2018-19 school year.
To help facilitate the strategy, the budget maintains the numeracy lead positions that were introduce during the 2016-17 school year, with an increase of one part-time numeracy lead at St. Michael’s and St. Francis.
The board’s senior administration believes the 2018-19 budget has a strong focus on Catholicity, student achievement, and student well-being.