In 2016, the Okanagan Skaha School Board closed McNicoll Park Middle School in Penticton. While this year’s school board budget is tight, trustees do not expect the topic of school closures to arise. (Black Press file photo)

In 2016, the Okanagan Skaha School Board closed McNicoll Park Middle School in Penticton. While this year’s school board budget is tight, trustees do not expect the topic of school closures to arise. (Black Press file photo)

Okanagan Skaha School Board does not anticipate closures

School district budget tight as a result of declining enrolment

The Okanagan Skaha School Board is operating on a tight budget for this year, with a deficit of roughly $39,000 on its amended budget of $60 million, but the board is not considering closing individual schools as a cost-cutting measure.

“The discussion of closing schools wasn’t a topic that is remotely being considered,” said James Palanio, chair of the school board.

School boards are required to have balanced budgets. If the budget does not balance, then cuts to programs and even school closures could be considered.

Palanio said the tight budget was the result of fewer children in the school system. The school district unexpectedly lost 109 students this year, reducing the amount of funding the district will receive from the province.

READ ALSO: Lack of communication, transparency put SD67 in tough financial position, says financial advisor

READ ALSO: School district looks to financial expert to balance books

There are around 5,900 students in the school district, from Summerland, Naramata, Kaleden and Penticton.

While school closures have not been discussed at the board table this year, the topic has been brought up only a few years ago.

In the spring of 2016, three schools in the Okanagan Skaha School District were slated to close. The three were Trout Creek Elementary School in Summerland, West Bench Elementary School near Penticton and McNicoll Park Middle School in Penticton.

The decision was in an attempt balance the books, as the school district of the day was expecting to see a $1.025 million shortfall.

In June of that year, the Rural Education Enhancement was announced, and as a result, the school district applied for and received the funding to keep Trout Creek and West Bench open, while McNicoll Park was closed.

Linda Van Alphen, a Summerland school trustee who was also on the school board in 2016, said she does not expect further discussions about school closures.

“We’ve taken care of the budget and adjusted,” she said.

To report a typo, email:
news@summerlandreview.com
.



news@summerlandreview.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Schools

Just Posted

A search is underway for David Borden in Oyama, since he was last seen Wednesday, June 16. (Contributed)
UPDATE: Missing Lake Country man found

Family thanks Facebook community for sharing photo of missing man

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about B.C.’s plan to restart the province during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, Tuesday, May 25, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Interior Health COVID-19 cases falling slower than the rest of B.C.

More than a third of provincial cases announced Thursday came from the Interior

Kelowna Fire Department. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)
Abandonded campfire results in Kelowna bushfire

The fire was measured at 20 feet by 20 feet in size and has been deemed not suspicious in nature

The Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce will host the Valley Wide Business Expo May 4 at Predator Ridge Resort. (photo submitted)
Golf raffle helps Okanagan families score homes

Habitat for Humanity Okanagan swinging into action this summer with a new raffle

A small pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins pass by close to shore in Campbell River June 16, 2021. Still capture from video courtesy of Kimberly Hart
VIDEO: Dolphin sunset captured from Vancouver Island shore

Spectacular setting for view of travelling pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins

Jeanette Megens
KCR: Volunteering is sharing your story

Kelowna Community Resources shares stories of its volunteers in a weekly column

The crosswalk is at Third Street and Mackenzie and was installed on June 17. (Liam Harrap - Revelstoke Review)
Painting a rainbow: First Pride crosswalk installed in Revelstoke

‘It signals to the community that this city is inclusive,’ Mayor Gary Sulz

The BC Ferries’ website is down for the second time in one week from what they say is likely an overwhelming increase in web traffic. (Black Press Media file photo)
Surging web traffic crashes BC Ferries’ site again

Website down for second time this week

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The Shuswap River in Enderby draws in people from near and far in the summer months of each year. (Brendan Shykora - Morning Star)
RDNO ends lengthy attempt to bring new boating regulations to Shuswap River

With no consensus among stakeholders or remaining funds, the regional district is moving on

John Furlong told the Vancouver Board of Trade on Feb. 20, 2020 that he thinks the city could and should bid for the 2030 Winter Games. (CP photo)
PODCAST: John Furlong lays out a ‘provincial’ B.C. plan to host the 2030 Winter Olympics

Podcast: Chat includes potential role for Vancouver Island communities

The pilot of this single-engine propeller plane was unhurt after crash-landing in a Como Road orchard Friday, June 18. Photo: Laurie Tritschler
Plane crash lands into Grand Forks orchard, pilot injured

RCMP have secured the crash site, pending investigation by Transport Canada

A tenant walks in front of her home on Boundary Road on Friday, June 18, 2021 after it was destroyed by fire the night before in Chilliwack. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Family homeless after fire rips through Chilliwack house

Turtle rescued, no one seriously hurt following Boundary Road fire in Chilliwack

Most Read