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BC budget: NDP to spend big on schooling, but not schools

Sep 12, 2017 by

The B.C. NDP has pledged to boost education spending by $681 million over the next three years, but the party’s first budget did not promise to build any new schools in the province.

The NDP renewed a commitment from the previous Liberal government to construct new schools in Surrey and Coquitlam, and to renovate one in Burnaby. But there was no mention in the budget of any additional new schools for under-served areas such as Vancouver’s Olympic Village, where children must enter lotteries for kindergarten spaces in over-capacity neighbouring schools.

In fact, Monday’s budget committed less money this fiscal year to capital spending in the kindergarten-to-12 system — $635 million — compared to the amount the Liberals pledged in the February budget ($687 million).

Education Minister Rob Fleming said the NDP’s first full budget in February could include more capital projects for schools. “We are getting projects approved now (through the Treasury Board). We’ll look to get as many done between now and the end of the school year,” he said.

Fleming added his ministry is working closely with the City of Surrey, in particular, which has hundreds of portables because of over-crowded schools. “We know we need to be more agressive to build more schools in Surrey,” he said.

 

Source: BC budget: NDP to spend big on schooling, but not schools | Vancouver Sun

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