Classroom Sizes Questioned at Sask. Legislature Thursday

The provincial government was again questioned on classroom sizes in Saskatchewan during question period Thursday morning.

This comes as education minister Gord Wyant is consulting with the teachers across the province on class sizes and class composition, and Wednesday, Wyant maintained that class composition is the bigger of the two issues.

Education critic Carla Beck said there’s currently a classroom crisis in Regina schools.

“13 schools will exceed their capacity in less than a decade,” Beck said. “Harbour Landing School is already over 134% capacity, and Wascana Plains (School) is anticipated to exceed over 130% capacity this year.”

However, education minister Gord Wyant said the province has a record education budget of $2.48 Billion this year.

“We’ll continue to look at the capital requirements that the school boards present to us,” Wyant said. “We’ll always do that in the context of a balanced budget, but making sure that students in our classrooms have proper facilities in which to learn is a priority of this government, and it will continue to be a priority of this government.”

Wyant said he is currently meeting with teachers across the province to talk about class size and composition, and will be releasing some of the findings of that report in the coming days.

Issues in Prince Albert were also brought up on the floor of the Saskatchewan Legislature Thursday morning during Question period.

NDP MLA for Prince Albert Northcote Nicole Rancourt asked Premier Scott Moe when Prince Albert will see a new hospital that was promised in September of 2017, but the conversation has since shifted to a redevelopment project of the current Prince Albert Victoria Hospital.

Premier Moe answered, saying the province will not be closing a hospital in the Gateway to the North like the NDP did in 1997.

“Here’s what we can tell the people of Prince Albert and the people of northern Saskatchewan: we’re going to build them a new hospital,” Moe said, to much applause from his caucus members. “We’re going to build them a new hospital that has more capacity, has more hospital, and the province is going to pay for that hospital.”

When asked about a second bridge for Prince Albert, highways minister Greg ottenbreit says the province is committed to a project that would see a second bridge built.


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