Possible school bus fees pushed back to September

Boyd says much thought has gone into the dilemma facing the school district heading into Thursday’s meeting, and while no conclusions have been made, nothing will be brought in during the current school year as previously thought.

“We’ve been doing as much of the background research as we can in regards to the formula and calculations and things like that. At this point obviously no decision has been done by anyone but the Minister [of Education] has followed up with addressing the idea with the Technical Review Committee, who were assigned the task of looking at it,” Boyd explains. “What we’re suggesting is, is that we utilize our budgeting procedures to cover off as much as we can this year and not implement until September, if in fact we need to implement it.”

Covering the shortfall in the transportation budget is already costing the school district $370,000 this year.

Boyd seems cautiously optimistic that some progress can be made on the issue based on conversations with the ministry, but acknowledges that the process is a complex one.

“We did talk to a gentleman from the ministry today who basically is one of the most knowledgeable about the actual formula and calculations. It is very complicated and they do recognize that there’s some issues with it. That information has been turned over to the review committee and he will be at the review committee on Thursday as well, so he’ll be able to add his information at that. I think we’ve got enough information to pursue the discussion at a fairly decent level with review.” 

The district also pledged to provide an update at every public meeting to keep parents informed, even if nothing has changed on the issue leading up to the time that a final decision is made. 

The shortfall came about when a $541,000 cut in transportation funding was presented to School District 60. At the time the funding was cut the district was already running more than $200,000 over budget.