Trustees now say they can balance budget

Parksville Qualicum Beach School District 69 was originally tasked with finding $1.2 million in savings

School board trustees say they are pretty confident they will be able to balance the budget during the next school year, Lynette Kershaw told The NEWS last week.

The board was tasked with finding $1.2 million in savings, and a draft preliminary budget was presented at a meeting last Wednesday.

The budget sits $507,000 short of a balanced budget, Kershaw said, but if the district changes Spring Break from one week back to two next year, that will make up $191,000 of savings. There is also just over $500,000 in surplus from last year that could be used as a last resort.

Savings so far were found by increasing bus rates and finding savings in each of the schools as well as finding a 10 per cent savings from each budget committee.

“It’s a lot of little things, it‚’s not really any one or two big ticket items,” Kershaw said.

Kershaw did want to outline that student support services have not been cut, nor have teachers been cut back.  Another budget meeting will be held April 17 and then on April 23 the budget will need to be finalized.