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HomeNewsHigh school teachers president says layoff numbers don't add up

High school teachers president says layoff numbers don’t add up

The president of the high school teachers with the Near North District School Board says there’s some agreement over what’s caused 30 educators at the high school level to lose their jobs.

District 4 President Glen Hodgson says he agrees with the board that cuts to education grants are to blame.

However, Hodgson is dismissing the board’s claim that declining enrolment is also a factor.

Hodgson says the Near North board has been experiencing declining enrolment for the past 10 to 12 years and never in that time has the number of teachers losing their jobs been as high as 30.

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Hodgson says the board’s high schools are seeing about 150 fewer students.

“When you’re down that many students and you do the formula in terms of how many students generate a teacher, the math would come up with between six to eight teachers that we would lose,” Hodgson said.

“We would have to be down hundreds of students, hundreds, to get anywhere near close to 30 with no retirements.”

Hodgson adds once the number of teachers who are retiring is also factored in, then the number of layoffs approaches zero because it’s his understanding that six to eight teachers are also retiring this year.

Hodgson says the public won’t get an admission from the Ford government, but he believes a major reason for the layoffs is the province taking the number of students to teacher ratio from 22:1 to 28:1.

“That’s a contributing factor because suddenly you need fewer teachers with this new formula,” he said.

Hodgson repeated his belief it’s not too late to recall the affected teachers.

He acknowledges that with the schedule set for the next school year, getting teachers back to work would mean re-adjusting schedules which would be disruptive and perhaps chaotic.

He says even if the educators were recalled as late as August 31st, “my members would make it work”.

“It would be very difficult but not impossible,” he said.


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