Class size changes mean 10,000 fewer teachers over five years: Watchdog

Financial Accountability Officer Peter Weltman said the move by the Progressive Conservative government will save the province about $2.8 billion over the same period, and a further $1 billion annually thereafter.

In its report, the FAO estimates there will be 9,060 fewer high school teachers and 994 fewer elementary teachers by the 2023-24 school year.

“The class sizes have been (increased) so those teacher jobs will no longer be required,” Weltman said. “It’s not a cut, it’s a cost avoidance.”

… The government ordered school boards to start increasing class sizes, moving to an average of 28 from 22 in high schools over four years. Class sizes for grades 4 to 8 will increase by one student per classroom over the same period, to 24 from 23.

Facing a backlash over the impact the changes would have on teacher jobs, the government created a $1.6-billion fund for school boards to ensure no teachers were laid off as a result of its plan.