School commissioners earn less

education(Quebec) Couillard The government intends to reduce the remuneration of school trustees as part of its reform of the education system, the Press has learned.

The total remuneration of commissioners amounted to $ 11.3 million for 2015-2016, according to the budgets adopted by 72 school boards. As there are about a thousand commissioners, including 712 directly elected, we talk about $ 11 300 in average. But there are big differences: Compensation varies by size of the school board and in the responsibilities of the Commissioner. A president receives a higher salary than the other Commissioners, for example.

Abolished elections

The reform, which will be tabled this fall will result in the abolition of school elections. Instead of being overwhelmingly elected by universal suffrage, the Commissioners will be appointed otherwise by the parents of the meeting or by governing boards, among others. School boards will still be 72 in number, but they become “school boards”, according to a government document including La Presse revealed the content in June. Quebec wants to give more power to parents by reserving about a third of seats in each school board. They have the right to vote, which they lack at present. The reform, however, limit the authority of school boards to grant more autonomy to schools.

In this context, the remuneration of school trustees will be revised downwards, according to a source plugged on the reform in preparation. For its part, the entourage of the Minister of Education, François Blais, confirmed that the measure “is part of the government’s thinking” and “intent” is indeed to reduce the remuneration. He declined to quantify the savings identified.

School commissioners are paid under the Education Act, legislation that will change with the reform. Québec fixed by regulation the maximum amount that may be paid to all members of a board of commissioners. The more students in a school board, the higher the compensation is high. The Regulations are amended every year to pay indexation linked to the consumer price index.

Each board of commissioners decides the remuneration of its members according to government settings. The third of the remuneration of a commissioner is not taxable, since this part is paid as compensation of part of its expenditures.

A commissioner base pay ranges from about $ 5,000 to over $ 12,000 depending on the number of students in the area concerned. In addition, there are other, as can be seen by analyzing the case of the Commission scolaire de Montreal (CSDM), the largest in Quebec.

The basic salary of a commissioner of the CSDM is $ 13,151. But almost all of the 18 commissioners receive more. Ten of them received $ 3,050 more because they are members of a working committee. Six other pocketing $ 17,154 in addition to the basic remuneration, because they are members of the executive committee. President Catherine Harel Bourdon than 85 wins $ 770.

The pay cuts will cringe at the Federation of Quebec school boards. In recent years, it has called for a wage increase for Commissioners in order to enhance this function.

Framed expenses

Quebec will also tighten the rules to avoid controversial spending by school boards, particularly with regard to participation in training seminars of all kinds. One of these seminars was to bring managers to “get out the clown ‘in them, as we have already seen. School boards often justify this expenditure by saying that the Act to foster the development and recognition of the labor skills requires all agencies to invest 1% of their payroll in employee training. The Minister of Employment and Labour, Sam Hamad, will present a bill to further frame the eligible expenses. François Blais also intends to adopt a formula to guide certain expenses of future school boards: for example, their members would be required to receive training in management.

Moreover, the Education Minister lamented yesterday that the school boards as the CSDM have refused to open their care during the strike of 34,000 teachers. Despite additional grants from the government. Mr. Blais said that he can give them “guidance” in this matter at this time, because school boards are “self-government”. The situation is now changing: the minister would give a “directory authority” on future boards in the bill to be tabled this fall, according to an informed source.

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