Federal and Provincial Pandemic Funding Allocated

Posted On Friday November 13, 2020

The Kamloops-Thompson School Board approved a budget of $6.523 million allocating the federal and provincial governments’ investments supporting the safe restart for schools.

The one-time investment from the two funding announcements relating to the Safe Return to Schools / Class from the Provincial and Federal governments was provided for the implementation of new measures to address the pandemic. 

“The District has been estimating and tracking the additional costs of implementing COVID-19 health and safety protocols, with the priority of providing additional staffing, supporting increased enrolment for distributed learning and increasing cleaning frequency,” Trina Cassidy, Director of Finance reported to the Board of Education on Monday, Nov. 9, 2020.

The Provincial Government announced $45.6M to manage COVID-19 and the safe return of students to in-class instruction. From these funds, the District created a special purpose grant of $1.174M enabling it to hire additional daytime custodians, purchase disposable and reusable masks, hand sanitizer, technology, and additional cleaning supplies.

The Federal Government announced the $242.4M Safe Return to Class Fund on Aug. 26, 2020. From these funds, the District created a special purpose grant of $ 5.349M.

The use of the Federal funds must align with the requirements set out by the Ministry of Education to address learning resources and supports, health and safety, transportation, and before and after school child care.  

Of the $5.39 million in federal funding to be received, the District is prioritizing learning resources/supports and health and safety. Annual funding in the operating budget of $660K from the Ministry of Education for transportation allows the District to maintain the current level of buses and routes effectively with items such as personal protection equipment for drivers purchased under the health and safety section mentioned above.  Similarly, the District has staff and supplies within its operating budget to sustain the current level of support for before and after school childcare programs.  

Additional costs covered in the draft budget include approximately $4.2 M for staffing (custodial, teaching, Aboriginal support, and relief budgets); $258,000 for reusable and disposable face masks; $150,000 for HVAC filters; and $500,000 for hand sanitizer and improved hand hygiene. Detailed summaries of the budget can be found here.

 

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