$300 Million For Public Education Is Welcome, But More Needs to be Done To Close The Funding Gap, Say Elementary Teachers

    TORONTO, Aug. 14 /CNW/ - The Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario
(ETFO) welcomes the increased funding for public education announced today.
However, ETFO President Emily Noble is concerned that elementary students are
still being deprived of the quality education they deserve.
    Noble was reacting to Education Minister Kathleen Wynne's announcement of
an additional $300 million in education funding over the next two years.
Minister Wynne made her announcement at the ETFO annual meeting which is
underway in Toronto this week.
    Noble pointed out that the $300 million is a "step in the right
direction", but it will not close the funding gap in elementary education.
    Currently, each elementary student in Ontario receives $711 less in
funding than does each secondary student.
    "This gap in funding has many negative implications for students," said
Noble, "including larger class sizes in grades 4 to 8; fewer specialist
teachers providing programs in music, physical and health education, and art
programs; fewer elementary schools staffed with a teacher-librarian and
guidance specialists; and virtually no design and technology and family
studies programs."
    Noble said teachers are encouraged by Minister Wynne's statement that the
government will continue to make investments to reduce the gap in funding
between elementary and secondary students.
    "Teachers will be watching closely to see that this commitment is kept,"
said Noble. "As well, we will be monitoring how this additional funding for
elementary education is allocated by the individual school boards, to ensure
it is used for its intended purpose."

    The Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario represents more than
70,000 public elementary school teachers and education workers across Ontario
and is the largest teacher federation in Canada.

For further information:

For further information: Larry Skory, (416) 948-0195 (cell),
lskory@etfo.org; Johanna Brand, (416) 948-2554 (cell), jbrand@etfo.org; Mary
Morison, (416) 948-3406 (cell), mmorison@etfo.org; August 13-16, ETFO Media
Centre, Queens Quay 1, Concourse Level, The Westin Harbour Castle, Toronto,
Phone: (416) 957-7181, Fax: (416) 957-7180

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Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario

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