Alberta Teachers’ Association wants more student funding

The Alberta Teachers’ Association (ATA) is asking for an additional $1.2 billion toward K–12 education to bring student funding up to the national average.

In a statement, the ATA says this comes after Statistics Canada released data showing Alberta ranked last in the national list of per-pupil school board operating costs.

A photo showing a graph of the national ranking of per-pupil school board operating costs.

Alberta ranks last in Canada for spending on public education. (Photo Credit: Alberta Teachers’ Association)

ATA president Jason Schilling says they desperately need the extra funding for the province to maintain a “world-class public education system.”

“This responsibility lies solely at the feet of our provincial government. Provincial funding has not kept pace with student population growth over the years; school boards are spending 99 per cent of the revenue they receive, but it is not enough to keep up,” said Schilling. “As the wealthiest province in the country, we should have the best-funded education system, not the worst.”

Meanwhile, the association adds less funding causes understaffing at schools, leading to a decrease in support offered to students.

“This just confirms what we’ve believed all along. These are statistics from StatCan. There’s no spin. No partisan rhetoric. They’re just the facts,” said Schilling.

“The government needs to step up and address this embarrassing funding shortfall in Tuesday’s budget. As Albertans, we can do better. Our kids deserve better.”

As the Government of Alberta is expected to release its 2023 budget on Tuesday, the ATA says their association will be watching closely.

Schilling will also attend the Alberta legislature, and be available for media questions right after the budget is released.

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