Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Today's the big day

At the exact moment I type this, Premier Dalton McGuinty and Education Minister Kathleen Wynne are making virtually simultaneous announcements regarding the Sept. 2010 allotment of full-day kindergarten sites.
The reporting over the past day on this has been very curious. Many pushed out stories when the news came out Monday the announcement would be coming Tuesday-- a few days earlier than the last date I'd heard for the announcement (Friday, Jan. 15). I was surprised by the 'new' flavour to many of the stories. Boards had to submit their candidates for year one back on Nov. 30, and there was plenty of reporting at the time across the province in those areas where boards released the list of candidate sites.
However on Monday, many things I spied were written as though, "Surprise! The government is announcing 600 sites!!" CTV Ottawa even, at one point, tweeted it had the list of sites for the Ottawa boards. That was deceiving, as it only re-published the list of candidate sites submitted to the ministry back in November.
After the announcements, local government MPPs within each district will release the names of the schools funded for the first year of the program. These are sites concentrated in lower-income areas that have the available 'purpose-built' space.
More on this later.

The list has been posted on the ministry website.


Anonymous said...

I'm pretty sure the media in my area reported the names of the schools in our boards in November too.

I actually watched Wynne on CityPulse and the number she quoted wasn't 600 schools to get the program this year. It was a number closer to 680"something" gov't math rounds up in the release I guess.

So that's 680"something" schools out of what do we have now 4000 schools in the province.

This will be a close watch because if the cost for those skyrockets and boards can't manage it I'm not convinced we'll see a Phase Two.


RetDir said...

CC is correct - I think boards will use this first phase to gauge what the real cost is, and then make decisions as to how many new spaces they can afford in the second round - this will be significantly lower than the number that are being announced. Some boards have said that they will go ahead at all cost - they have already been warned by the Ministry that they can't implement this at the cost of an unbalanced budget (no prizes for guessing which boards those might be!). TVDSB had an interesting reaction in the fall similar to this - I'm not sure what their thinking is at the moment.

Anonymous said...

I made a mistake.
Wynne quoted a 580"something" no. and rounded up, not 680.

Actually in the LFP today the Thames Valley board still doesn't want to be in the daycare business or horn in on independent providers in their community. I kind of like that actually. Very considerate.

When our local Catholic board had their release in the media in November there approach was also different...almost cautious about building up hopes. I recall that they reminded that the parent still played the primary role in caregiving and reminded that it was only voluntary.

In the end for our community it didn't matter because the closest program to us is in another town approx. a half hour if you go the speed limit.

Anonymous said...

I was speaking with a kindergarten teacher who teaches in a school where this ELP was piloted. She told me that she was very surprised that less than two dozen children were in the program BUT that they had two full-time teachers and one ECE for that number of kids. Then, as it turned out the school that is now piloting the program isn't on the list to get the program.

Education Reporter said...

Anon 15 Jan. 11:22

Pilot-program schools weren't included in the first year of the ELP program. Boards are being given time to "transition" these programs to the fully board-run ELP as mandated by the ministry.