Foundation Operating Grant Formula
Res #: 34-01M
Responses Received: No
Departments: Saskatchewan Learning
Resolution No. 34A-01M (Emergent)
WHEREAS, the Provincial Government is conducting a review of the Foundation Operating Grant Program; and
WHEREAS, options are being considered that would increase the cost to property taxpayers in many rural municipalities;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that SARM lobby the Provincial Government for the opportunity to be present at any discussions regarding amendments to the Foundation Operating Grant formula.
Response from the Honorable Jim Melenchuk, Minister of Education:
Financing the public education system in Saskatchewan is a shared responsibility. The government provides funding from general revenues on an equalizing basis and school boards raise the remaining finding requirements from the property tax base. Provincial funding for kindergarten to grade 12 education in Saskatchewan is distributed through the Operating Grant formula. The formula is based on the principles of transparency, unconditionality, incentives for efficient and effective use of resources, equalization, and a balance between stability and reaponsiveness.
Any review of the Foundation Operating Grant includes consultation with many educational stakeholders, a significant portion of which represent the interests of rural school divisions and rural taxpayers. Each year there are changes or refinements to the Foundation Operating Grant that are considered by the External Reference Committee. The committee includes representation by the Saskatchewan School Trustees Association on behalf of all school boards.
The Department of Education will also consult with the Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities (SARM) and the Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association (SUMA) on any major financing issues that would affect the operating grant program.