TDSB Calls on the Province for Additional Funding for Coronavirus Costs

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The Toronto District School Board (TDSB) is requesting more funding from the provincial government to help recover some of the costs incurred by the board during the coronavirus pandemic.

The TDSB made the request in a motion at a special trustees meeting Tuesday evening.

“The school trustees adopted a motion asking for funding to help school boards provide additional staff and resources to support mental health and well-being; special education; children with special needs; pupils who go from primary to secondary; and those struggling with literacy and numeracy, “said a TDSB press release on Tuesday.

The board also said it hoped to recover some of the costs associated with distance learning, as well as funds available when schools become fully operational after the pandemic.

Publicly funded schools have been closed since mid-March, and school boards have relied heavily on technology to enable students to learn across the province.

With so many students dependent on technology for their education, the board said it was asking the province to replace the money used from the TDSB budget to buy devices like iPads for remote use.

“The TDSB has delivered more than 56,000 devices to families since the school closed,” said the board. “With device requests still being received, more than 4,000 more devices are expected to be delivered in the coming days.”

The board said it would like provincial funding for the technology to be set at a “one device to one student ratio.”

On April 17, the government announced its partnership with tech giant Apple and Rogers Communications to provide iPads and Internet access to low-income students in the province.

Rogers Communications is the parent company of Citytv.

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