Catholic school boards grappling with funding shortfalls

Catholic school boards in Regina and Saskatoon are meeting on Monday evening to discuss the loss of millions of dollars in provincial money.

Saskatoon Catholic board receiving $1.2M reduction, total hit of nearly $6M

Because the province operates on a different fiscal year than the school boards, the boards say they're actually taking a hit of $54 million. (CBC News)

Catholic school boards in Regina and Saskatoon were meeting Monday to discuss the funding shortfalls they face after last month's provincial budget. 

The budget saw $22 million cut from Kindergarten-to-Grade-12 money for all school divisions, despite the growing number of students and new schools being built and opened.

Because the province and school divisions operate on different fiscal years, the Saskatoon Catholic school division says, the actual hit to provincial funding is $54 million. 

Regina Catholic Schools says it will have to reduce spending by $1.5 million while it grapples with three new schools and 370 more students. 

"At this point, we're expecting a shortfall of about $1 million. That's the gap between what we will receive and what we will need," Twylla West, the communications coordinator for Regina Catholic Schools, said in an email. 

Meanwhile, Saskatoon will see six new schools and 550 more students while reducing expenses by $1.25 million. The school board says the funding reduction is actually nearly $6 million, due to expenses incurred from growth. 

It also says $8.4 million in funding will need to be re-assigned throughout the division and the total funding shortfall will amount to roughly $9.65 million.

School division budgets need to be submitted to the provincial government by June 30. 

Saskatchewan has seen 20 new schools open throughout the province to accommodate approximately 2,000 more students. 

With files from Kevin O'Connor