RMPA Letter to the School Board – Funding Models and Consultation
Details of the latest step in the RMPA’s communications with K-12 education decision makers about funding models and protecting out-of-timetable courses…
Reynolds Music families may recall that, in March, the RMPA executive sent a letter to Minister Rob Fleming expressing concern about the potentially negative impacts of a shift to “per-student” funding on out-of-timetable courses.
At Reynolds, such courses currently include: jazz band, musical theatre, marching band and choir, as well as dance, leadership, film and TV, and a number of sports programs.
On April 9, we received a reply from the Ministry of Education, in which it was noted that while the Ministry determines the funding for the K-12 system, it is the School Districts that decide how that funding is spent.
The letter suggested that it was important for parents (and other education stakeholders) to advocate for the protection of valued courses by “work[ing] closely with their local Board of Education through the annual planning and budgeting process.”
The RMPA executive searched the School District 61 website for information about their process for engaging with parents and other stakeholders. We found a policy – “Policy 1163 Consultation” – that describes general terms and principles related to stakeholder consultation, but we could not find a specific description of the District’s process for engaging stakeholders in planning and budgeting decisions.
As a result, the RMPA executive has now submitted a letter to the SD61 Board Chair and Trustees, expressing our readiness to be active contributors to a discussion on protecting out-of-timetable courses under a per-student funding model, and inviting them to tell us what process they have in place to enable this. This is the letter (sent on April 30):RMPA – Letter to SD61 Board – Funding Model and Consultation – April 30
We’ll let you know if this gets any response and/or traction.
Meanwhile, if you have ideas or suggestions on effective ways to get the attention of the School Board on this issue, please share them with us via the RMPA email: firstname.lastname@example.org.