B.C. school districts are set to receive a last-minute injection of funds ahead of the start of the school year.
The province announced a one-time $60-million fund on Monday (Aug. 29), calling it a response to the rising costs of living.
The fund will be divided among B.C.’s 60 school districts on an as-needed basis, with each receiving at least $250,000. A breakdown of the funding shows Surrey will receive the largest amount at $7.4 million, followed by Vancouver with $4.7 million, Coquitlam with $3 million and Central Okanagan and Burnaby with about $2.4 million each. Fifteen districts will receive the minimum amount.
What they do with that amount will be up to them, but Minister of Education Jennifer Whiteside suggested the money should be used to bolster existing initiatives, such as meal programs.
The money could also be used to finance school supplies or cover the expenses of students in need for activities like field trips, Whiteside said.
Additionally, $3.8 million will be provided through the Federation of Independent School Associations to assist families struggling with the cost of living, and those who educate their kids through independent school authorities.
The government says the announcement is the first of several measures it is taking to address record inflation levels. The Minister of Finance is set to make further commitments next week.