The Calgary Board of Education says it wants to engage with parents, community members and staff as it develops future budgets, and has scheduled a 广州蒲友 chat with the board’s chief financial officer along with various engagement meetings starting next week. Chief financial officer Brad Grundy told Global News it’s the “first time in recent history” the board will host such meetings.
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The move comes five months after the board has to address public outcry over increased bus stop distances for some students who’d been asked to walk up to seven kilometres in a congregated bus stop system. When asked if the meetings were in response to the September controversy, Grundy said in a statement the CBE is “developing a new system-wide approach to public engagement, and these meetings are part of this approach.”
Scroll down for a full list of meeting times and locations
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The president of the Calgary Association of Parent and Student Councils (CAPSC), Lisa Davis, said Monday she was hopeful the meetings were a “first step” towards a “new chapter in transparency.” Davis said in CBE’s recent stakeholder survey, only 29 per cent of parents were satisfied with the budget consultation.
“To be most effective CBE should be releasing the financial information they will be presenting now – there are hundreds of pages of financial documents on the website,” Davis wrote in an email to Global News.
While the CBE provided a link to the presentation that will be given at the meetings, Davis pointed out it wasn’t clearly labeled in the board’s email communication to parents.
“Trustees were presented with the new budget in December on a Friday, with a vote on the budget then scheduled for Monday. Certainly this is not enough time to provide robust feedback and analysis.”
Davis suggested CBE should also release school budgets so parents can see the changes in funding.
“CAPSC remains concerned that once again half of new provincial funding has not reached the classroom as the minister directed this summer,” Davis wrote.
The CBE said superintendents will attend the meetings and give brief presentations before taking questions and suggestions. The CBE acknowledged some feedback “may be difficult to incorporate into the upcoming budget due to short timelines, it will inform and support future decision making.”
“We want to reach out into our community and learn more about how they feel our resources should be allocated,” Grundy said in a statement. There is no RSVP required to attend the meetings.
The first-ever 广州蒲友 chat with Grundy is set for March 10 from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. You can follow the handle @yyCBEdu and use the #CBEbudget hashtag to participate. You can also submit online feedback at cbe.ab广州桑拿网/budget.
Budget engagement meetings:
DateTimeLocationMonday, Feb. 297 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.Area V Office
1123 – 87 Ave. S.W.Tuesday, March 17 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.Area III Office
4711 Maryvale Dr N.E.Monday, March 77 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.John G. Diefenbaker High School
6620 – 4 Street N.W.Tuesday, March 87 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.Area IV Office
A.E. Cross School
3445 – 37 Street S.W.Wednesday, March 97 p.m. to 8:30 pmRobert Thirsk High School
8777 Nose Hill Dr. N.W.
Editor’s note: This article has been updated with a link to the budget presentations, which are posted on the CBE website. An earlier quote implied the CBE’s presentation had not yet been released.