Funding supports under Budget 2014
Alberta Education is spending smarter by focusing funding where it will make the biggest difference for kids. We continue to invest every dollar where it will be most effective for student success. This budget is a thoughtful approach to government spending that continues to fund core programs and initiatives.
Enrolment – Fully Funded
In Budget 2014, we are fully funding enrolment growth in response to Alberta’s booming student population and changes in student demographics.
Enrolment in Alberta schools is projected to grow by 3.0% in 2014/2015. This is over 18,000 new students needing education support.
Small Class Size Initiative - $265 million
Government continues to honour its commitment to the Small Class Size Initiative. In Budget 2014, school boards will receive a 2% grant rate increase. Total support will reach $265 million, an increase of $17 million or 6.9% to account for the grant rate increase and enrolment growth in lower grades.
Since 2004/2005, more than $2.2 billion has been invested in the Small Class Size Initiative.
It is government’s expectation that boards will target funding to achieve class size results for our early learners. School boards will be required to post their class size survey results in their Annual Education Results Report.
Inclusive Education - $402 million
An inclusive education system is one that takes responsibility for all students and meets their diverse needs.
Budget 2014 provides a 2% grant rate increase for Inclusive Education, bringing total support to over $402 million. This funding will help ensure school boards have the flexibility to support the unique needs of all students.
Alberta Education provides funding to school boards so that they can deliver programs and services for all of their students. School boards allocate the funding they receive from Alberta Education to support the local programs and services they choose to offer. School boards also make decisions regarding class size, staffing levels, resources and materials.
Equity of Opportunity Grant - $113 million
This grant continues the Premier’s 2011 commitment to classroom supports for students.
There are three components under the funding formula: per student, distance, and low student density funding. This funding supports equitable access to education programs for all Alberta students, especially those attending rural schools. This grant recognizes the unique issues faced by rural school boards due to declining enrolment and distance challenges and ensures rural students have equitable access to educational programs and resources.
Regional Collaborative Service Delivery - $61 million
$61 million is included in Budget 2014 for Regional Collaborative Service Delivery, a new model to support schools and community partners in meeting the needs of children and youth (ECS to Grade 12) as well as families who have children and youth with complex needs (birth to age 20).
Transportation - $282 million
Student transportation is an integral part of the education system. We will continue to support a safe transportation system for nearly 300,000 Kindergarten to Grade 12 students across the province.
Budget 2014 provides $282 million in funding for transportation, up $10 million from 2013/2014. We continue to encourage school boards to take an innovative and collaborative approach to transportation planning and consider how they can deliver these services most effectively.
Private Schools and Private Early Childhood Services Operators - $220 million
Private schools and private early childhood services operators provide yet another option for Alberta parents. Over 30,000 children in Alberta attend private programs.
We are providing $220 million, a 3% increase, to private schools and private Early Childhood Services (ECS) operators to support projected enrolment increases and demographic changes.
Teachers’ Pension Plan
Alberta students will benefit from teachers who continue to receive some of the highest compensation levels in the country and a generous pension plan. Government will contribute $377 million to the Alberta Teachers’ Retirement Fund (ATRF) for the current services incurred. Alberta Treasury Board and Finance will make an additional contribution of $455 million for the pension liabilities for the pre-1992 services. Total government contributions to ATRF will reach $832 million for 2014/2015.
As part of Budget 2014, government will also make a $5.2 million investment to ensure teachers’ salaries are adjusted to the provincial average level for eligible school boards as outlined in the Framework Agreement.
Capital and Infrastructure Funding
In Budget 2014, funding for school capital will reach $649 million. This includes:
- $345 million in funding to support the Premier’s commitment to build an additional 50 new schools and 70 modernizations.
- $100 million for Infrastructure Renewal and Maintenance Funding* (IMR), an increase of $23 million compared to the previous year.
- $109 million in 2014-15 to complete the work remaining on 35 new schools and school modernizations previously approved in 2011.
- $95 million to support other expansion and renewal projects including the modular classroom initiative and remaining flood recovery efforts.
Over the next three fiscal years, government’s total capital investment will be approximately $1.9 billion.
(*The IMR program funds school renovation and/or upgrade projects valued up to $1 million. More information of IMR funding can be found in the School Capital Manual.)
Maintenance of School Facilities
The health and safety of Alberta’s students and staff in their learning environments remains a government priority. Government will invest $476 million for the Plant Operations and Maintenance grant to support the day-to-day upkeep of school facilities.
Department Administration Budget - Less than 2% of Education’s budget supports administration of the Ministry. The Ministry will continue to restrain its administrative spending similar to the level of Budget 2013.
For More Information
The Education Business Plan 2014-2017 presents the Ministry’s goals, priority initiatives and performance measures.
School Jurisdiction Funding Allocations
This link will take you to the funding allocations for each school jurisdiction, including the projected amount your school jurisdiction could receive in Budget 2014.
To learn more about how Budget 2014 is delivering the programs and services Albertans need, visit Budget 2014.