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Sagacious

The Education Cost Elephant

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On 2/20/2020 at 12:38 AM, Zeitgeist said:

While there are arguments for maintaining the two systems apart from the constitutional protections, the reality is that the savings from amalgamation would be minute.  You’d need the same number of teachers, principals, schools, and superintendents.  You would reduce the number of directors, a drop in the bucket.  Open access in high school means that all parents always have a choice of schools, public or separate, for their children to attend.  Some separate boards also have open access in elementary, which is fine.  The two systems compete for excellence, and we have the best publicly funded education system in the English speaking world.  I wouldn’t spoil that.  The politician who does would pay at the ballot box.

I must agree. The numbers of one school system would not be much. As someone who feels religion and public schools should be separate I in theory don't like separate schools based on religion but the practical reality is Catholic schools do not exclude any other religions and do not impose their religions on others in their schools and this is evidenced by the sheer no. of non Catholics who opt to go to Catholic schools.

That said, the separate Catholic system is an anachronism from constitutional decrees and is a separate issue. I just don't think it would save money or help what ails our schools.

Also I would argue this...no matter who the government is, it can not run a school system that is also a social service system on the scale it does without running huge deficits. The social services segment added to the school system, i.e., buses, special accommodations for disabilities, teaching assistants, teaching aides, ...these costs based on our desire to make school accessible and equal to all while great in theory, costs in reality and those costs have been sky rocketing. There is only so much taxes can collect for such services. Our expectations of social services being as large and unlimited as they now are can not be anymore. We can't afford it. The state as a big endless supply of breast  milk for anyone who is thirsty is just not working. That tit has shriveled up and we still have thousands screaming for that tit. Something has to give and parents addicted to the tit do not want to consider alternatives because they are afraid and no one has been able to articulate any that would give them confidence to be fair.

We need to look at the amount of social services and ask do or should they remain in public schools? Is it time we decentralize certain students into special needs institutions that can be run privately such as with the model they use in the state of Colorado which has proven quite successful as providing subsidies to such private institutions to service special needs children is still cheaper than doing it in regular schools.

The idea we can be all things to everyone with all needs in a public school system was never financially viable. It is a political reality no one wants to deal with because its not politically correct or sensitive to say certain children should not be mainstreamed-it provides a feel good exercise for the parents of these kids but does not address their issues which are high intensity needs and expensive and can't be served properly throwing them out willy nilly in public school settings where costs become redundant and serving such students competes with other costs.

Just like OHIP can not provide unlimited services, neither can a school system with social services. No one wants to talk limits and what those limits are and whether there are alternative service providing methods.

Edited by Rue

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All children deserve to be part of the community, included as much as possible.  We have enough computers, a ton of technology in fact.  We don’t need to be providing instruction free of charge to children learning international languages on weekends. Teachers do need the training and support in Applied Behaviour Analysis strategies.  Well trained front line personnel are key, including Educational Assistants and Child and Youth Workers.  Ontario’s education system is very strong.  We can reallocate funds but I wouldn’t do much cutting.  Perhaps we need to charge parents some fees for elite programs like International Baccalaureate and Extended French, but with waivers for low income families.

Edited by Zeitgeist

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