The District 1 Education Council is earning support from outside groups in its fight with the Department of Education over the provincial government's requirement to cut its budget.


Jean-Marie Nadeau, the president of the Société de l'Acadie du Noveau Brunswick, said he wants Premier David Alward to mediate the budget dispute between District 1 and the Department of Education. ((CBC))

New Brunswick's district education councils have been ordered to cut 0.8 per cent from their budgets by the end of March.

But the demand came with a request from Education Minister Jody Carr that the cuts not impact classroom education.

The District 1 Education Council, which represents francophone schools in Fredericton, Moncton and Saint John, told Carr that it was refusing to cut its budget because it couldn't safeguard classroom education.

Jean-Marie Nadeau, the president of the Société de l'Acadie du Noveau Brunswick, which advocates for francophone citizens and organizations, said the district is one is the fastest growing in the province and it should be spared.

"These cuts are what they call, an arm of massive destruction of our education system," Nadeau said.

"Everybody will pay more in the future if we cut today."

The department had sought the district to trim $500,000 from its budget.

Monique Caissie, the president of the francophone teachers' association, said the union is also backing the district saying the cuts would have hurt education.

"The cuts that they were going to have to make was going to affect the classroom," Caissie said.

"I mean they are talking about cutting into text book budgets, they are talking about cutting professional development for teachers, not filling vacant positions."

Radio blitz planned

The Acadian society and the teachers' association are planning a radio advertising campaign that will start on Monday that will attack the education cuts.


Education Minister Jody Carr has told District 1 that the department has already reduced the district's budget. (CBC)

The province's education minister said in a letter to the district education council that the cuts are final and the money has already been taken from the budget.

The president of the District 1 council declined an interview until he responds to Carr's letter. A spokesperson with the education minister said Carr was "too busy" for an interview.

Nadeau said it's now time for Premier David Alward to step in and mediate the dispute. 

"We will meet him wherever he wants, what time he wants, which location he wants. But we need to talk to him," he said.

Nadeau requested a meeting with Alward in writing earlier this week.