Premier Scott Moe announces immediate $7.5M for Sask. education funding

New Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe held his first cabinet meeting in Regina Tuesday morning, followed by the announcement of new education funding.

Moe and new Education Minister Gord Wyant made the announcement following 1st cabinet meeting

Premier Scott Moe's announcement came during a press conference after his first meeting with his new cabinet in Regina Tuesday morning. (CBC News)

New Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe has announced an immediate top-up in education funding of $7.5 million.

He said the money comes from savings in other ministries.

Moe's announcement came during a press conference after his first meeting with his new cabinet in Regina Tuesday morning.

"I think this is a good start and I think this is a healthy start," said Moe.

Last year, the Saskatchewan Party government's budget called for a 3.5 per cent wage cut for teachers and other public sector employees and slashed $54 million from education.

Saskatchewan School Boards Association president Shawn Davidson already has high hopes for some of the funding announced Tuesday.

"In my home school division of Prairie South, we had to downsize our supports for learning with our social workers," he said. "My own division at home is excited to be able to look at bringing some of those resources back as we now have the resources to do so."

'Simply not enough'

During the Saskatchewan Party leadership campaign, Moe promised a $30-million education funding boost to allow educational assistants to be hired.

According to Moe, the funding announced Tuesday will increase to $30 million, which will go toward the hiring of 400 in-school education professionals and other priorities to be outlined in the 2018-19 budget.

NDP interim leader Nicole Sarauer says that's not good enough.

"This isn't the promise that the current premier made about $30 million," she said. "That $30 million is needed now.

"This is simply not enough."

Moe made the announcement — his second since being sworn in as premier last Friday — alongside deputy premier and Minister of Education Gord Wyant.

Wyant also made education funding increases a key component of his campaign.

"I think what it does signify is our commitment to the sector," Wyant said of the funding. 

He was appointed to the education file during a cabinet shuffle last Friday.

Wyant replaced Bronwyn Eyre, who raised concerns as education minister for comments she made on treaty education. She was given the energy and resources portfolio, and named minister responsible for SaskWater and SaskEnergy.