Student enrolment and withdrawal numbers are detailed in the above graph. (Vernon School District)

Student enrolment and withdrawal numbers are detailed in the above graph. (Vernon School District)

Fewer local, more international students help cover one Okanagan school district’s $1.2M enrolment deficit

School district projected 13 fee-paying international students; 43 enrolled

More local students have opted for online learning this year, but their seats are being filled with an increase in international students.

Considering the current COVID-19 pandemic, the district only anticipated 13 fee-paying international students. The school district currently has 43 international students.

“The reduction in regular enrolment means that there is space in existing classes to teach these students without increasing staffing,” assistant secretary-treasurer Adrian Johnson said in a report.

All of the international youth had their student Visas in place prior to COVID restrictions.

“Some stayed over the summer, some came back two weeks early for their 14 quarantine,” superintendent Joe Rogers said.

There are 206 students studying online, compared to 128 last school year. This is due to more students enrolled in the online VLearn program.

Twenty-eight students have also withdrawn from the public system for homeschooling.

READ MORE: ‘Vernon schools are healthy:’ IH medical health officer

In total, Sept. 30 enrolment numbers are 8,492, which is only 33 fewer students than last year, but there are 117 fewer students in regular school compared to 2019-20.

The Vernon School District is facing a $1.2-million shortfall due to a drop in enrolment for the current school year.

While enrolment represents a large financial hit, other funding areas are up. There is a surplus for international, divisions and education assistants, which brings the total budget shortfall down to $290,000.

An operation surplus of $881,416 from 2019-20 will cover the end shortfall of $290,000.

“Fewer students with special educational needs means that fewer Education Assistants are needed to maintain the level of service provided across the district,” Johnson said. “This is expected to result in a cost-saving of about $460,000.”

The district is already staffed with a lower number of education assistants, so no layoffs or other staff changes are needed to achieve this cost-saving.

The average class size has also dropped. Kindergarten to Grade 3 has the largest reduction at 18 for 2020-21, compared to 19.5 last year and 20.4 the year prior.

“The enrolment variance means that two elementary schools are able to maintain reasonable class sizes with one fewer division,” Johnson said. “This is expected to result in a reduction in staff costs of about $180,000.”

READ MORE: North Okanagan-Shuswap School District faces $2-million deficit

READ MORE: COVID-19 outbreak at Kelowna Francophone school


@VernonNews
jennifer@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Schools

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Armstrong Green Space Society is calling for the preservation of the Royal York Golf Course, which may be in jeopardy pending an application to use the land for a major housing development. (File photo)
Armstrong group calls on council to spare local golf course from housing development

The Armstrong Green Space Society was formed in 2019 after word of the development surfaced

Movie crews filmed a holiday parade in Summerland in July. The parade, filmed on Main Street in Summerland, is for the movie, The Christmas Yule Blog. (John Arendt - Summerland Review)
QUIZ: Test your knowledge of holiday movies and television specials

The festive season is a time for relaxing and enjoying some seasonal favourites

A new public space build on a sediment deposit in the Sicamous Narrows is a possible part of a flood mitigation barrier outlined in a recent report given to Sicamous’ council. (Kerr Wood Leidal Image)
Sicamous flood protection plan, public walkway come with hefty price tag

New barrier against higher seasonal lake levels called a proactive approach by mayor

Vicki Proulx, executive director of the Vernon Winter Carnival Society, stands beneath a lights display the society lit up in Spirit Square Nov. 27, by way of announcing it will be taking over the 2021 downtown light-up event. (Brendan Shykora - Morning Star)
Vernon Winter Carnival Society lights up downtown square

The society announced it will be taking over next year’s downtown light-up event

(Dave Landine/Facebook)
VIDEO: Dashcam captures head-on crash between snowplow and truck on northern B.C. highway

Driver posted to social media that he walked away largely unscathed

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Help make children’s wishes come true

Black Press Media, BraveFace host mask fundraiser for Make-A-Wish Foundation

Langley RCMP issued a $2,300 fine to the Riverside Calvary church in Langley in the 9600 block of 201 Street for holding an in-person service on Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020, despite a provincial COVID-19 related ban (Dan Ferguson/Black Press Media)
Langley church fined for holding in-person Sunday service

Calvary church was fined $2,300 for defying provincial order

A pedestrian makes their way through the snow in downtown Ottawa on Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Wild winter, drastic swings in store for Canada this year: Weather Network

In British Columbia and the Prairies, forecasters are calling for above-average snowfall levels

NDP Leader John Horgan, left, speaks as local candidate Ravi Kahlon listens during a campaign stop at Kahlon’s home in North Delta, B.C., on April 18, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
(Randy Mills/@poohbah431111 - Twitter)
Motorcyclist rushed to Kelowna General Hospital after collision

The collision occurred around 7:15 p.m. at the intersection of Highway 33 and Gerstmar Road

A B.C. Ambulance Service paramedic wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 moves a stretcher outside an ambulance at Royal Columbia Hospital, in New Westminster, B.C., on Sunday, November 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Top doctor urges Canadians to limit gatherings as ‘deeply concerning’ outbreaks continue

Canada’s active cases currently stand at 63,835, compared to 53,907 a week prior

A Canadian Pacific freight train travels around Morant’s Curve near Lake Louise, Alta., on Monday, Dec. 1, 2014. A study looking at 646 wildlife deaths along the railway tracks in Banff and Yoho national parks in Alberta and British Columbia has found that train speed is one of the biggest factors. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Study finds train speed a top factor in wildlife deaths in Banff, Yoho national parks

Research concludes effective mitigation could address train speed and ability of wildlife to see trains

A airport worker is pictured at Vancouver International Airport in Richmond, B.C. Wednesday, March 18, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Canada extends COVID restrictions for non-U.S. travellers until Jan. 21 amid second wave

This ban is separate from the one restricting non-essential U.S. travel

Most Read