News / Calgary

Province to Calgary Board of Education: Find efficiencies in special needs transportation

Results of an Alberta Education operational review are to be released Thursday

The Calgary Board of Education Building. CBE.

Metro File Photo / Calgary Staff

The Calgary Board of Education Building. CBE.

Efficiencies in the delivery of special needs transporation should be sought for savings, according to a provincial review into the Calgary public school board's operations.

Results of a month-long operational review of the Calgary Board of Education (CBE) – a $1.4 billion operation – will be released Thursday: A four-page document offering "observations" rather than "recommendations," Metro has learned.

Metro reported in August that third-party organization School Bus Consultants (SBC) had already done a report for the CBE after doing a deep-dive into their transportation funding and planning.

The report found that the CBE was underfunded in special needs transportation by approximately $10 million—a sum the report said was “significant, ongoing and unavoidable” given the current provincial funding model.

Alberta Education staff spent time at CBE headquarters over the course of two weeks, beginning Aug. 14. Last week, CBE administration was briefed on the review’s findings but was told not to share the information with trustees, sources have said.

Metro reached out to a number of trustees who confirmed they hadn’t been given any information about the review’s findings.

In the last month, Metro has reported on a number of issues including transportation, bell times and CBE administration international travel—all of which Minister Eggen responded to by saying they were issues being investigated through the operational review.

It’s unclear if any specific suggestions for improvement will be released on those items in the report Thursday.

On the CBE website, they provide links the documents they provided to Alberta Education for the purpose of the review. They include operational budgets from 2015 to present, resource allocation methods fro 2016 to present and financial results from 2015-16.

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