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TDSB proposes cutting hundreds of jobs to tackle deficit

TORONTO, Ont. – The Toronto District School Board is proposing to axe hundreds of jobs — including high school teachers, vice-principals and guidance staff — to tackle a nearly $55-million deficit, according to a staffing report.

The board — the largest in Canada — is considering the job cuts to balance its books for next year.

The TDSB’s Human Resources and Professional Learning Committee released a report Tuesday that recommends a decrease in high school teachers, guidance counsellors, vice-principals and office staff and suggests increased elementary teachers and early childhood educators in response to full-day kindergarten.

The report recommends a reduction of 248 high school teaching positions due to declining enrollment. It also called for a reduction of 14 vice-principals across the board as well as nearly 50 guidance staffers including librarians and more than 20 special education staffers and teachers.

According to TDSB spokesman Shari Schwartz-Maltz, staffing is nearly 66 per cent of the board budget.

“We do need to pass a balanced budget,” she said.

“We are looking at ways to work with the money that we have and the money that we think we’re going to get and in creative ways, do the best for our students.”

However, the report recommends the addition of 338 early childhood educator positions and 62 elementary teacher positions as full-day kindergarten is rolled out.

The committee will meet Thursday to consider the report.