New Brunswick — With the new school year underway and our fresh-faced children already draining the life force from their exhausted new teachers, parents are still left to wonder how their kids will make it out of the New Brunswick public school ghetto with 250 fewer teachers to guide them.
Education and Early Childhood Development Minister Serge Rousselle claims parents won’t notice the classroom cuts because the department has reallocated the money for those salaries elsewhere within the school system.
The reason for the cuts, said Rousselle, is that the province simply has no wiggle room in its $33-million education budget — the largest in the province’s history — for teachers. The department quickly realized, after years of neglect, that schools across the province have more pressing needs than that of quality educators.
At the top of the list of “new” expenditures are numerous portable, ideally asbestos-free classrooms to compensate for overcrowding at newly constructed, poorly planned schools in Fredericton, Moncton and Saint John over the past 5 years.
An internal Department of Education memo intercepted by The Manatee reveals the complete list of supplies that the province can now afford to buy for its ailing schools:
- A full year’s supply of toilet paper and paper towels for every school
- First aid kits
- Re-charged fire extinguishers
“We believe these items will help students meet the low expectations we’ve set for them,” said Rousselle.
The minister also claims that, in terms of student-to-teacher ratio, New Brunswick is at the head of the class at 13:1. But upon further reading of the department memo, it was discovered that custodians, cafeteria staff, education assistants and volunteers were included in that calculation.
“Look at the bright side,” said Rousselle, “while your children may receive less personal instruction time, their provincial test scores couldn’t possibly get any lower.”