Red Deer schools are getting an influx of federal funding to help them cover the additional costs of preventing COVID-19. (Black Press file photo).

Red Deer schools are getting an influx of federal funding to help them cover the additional costs of preventing COVID-19. (Black Press file photo).

Red Deer public, Catholic schools get $7.5 million in total from Ottawa to deal with COVID-19 costs

Additional cost of at-home learning, substitute teachers, PPEs factored in

Red Deer Public Schools is welcoming nearly $4 million in federal funding to help support COVID-19 prevention needs for staff and students.

Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools is happy to get $3.5 million of the money being granted on a per-pupil basis, according to enrolment numbers.

In total, Ottawa is providing $250 million for Alberta school jurisdictions.

With 11,000 students, Red Deer Public Schools is getting $3,921,750, while Red Deer Catholic Schools, with 9,200 students, is receiving about half a million less.

“We are pleased that the federal government provided $3.5 million to our school division for COVID-19 relief,” said acting superintendent Kathleen Finnigan of Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools.

She added the funds will be distributed according to need.

“Our senior administration is currently working diligently on a plan on how we will spend these dollars.”

Nicole Buchanan, chair of the public school board, said schools all face significantly higher costs related to COVID-19, so the federal money will close some funding gaps.

Buchanan added school divisions must use of the money to support COVID-19-related staffing costs, to adapt learning spaces (including online learning), and to buy protective equipment and cleaning supplies.

The public schools allocation includes spending $1.26 million on the extra staffing and supports for at-home learning.

According to district estimates, the anticipated substitute teaching cost related to COVID-19 illness and isolation of staff will equal $1.86 million.

Some $127,000 of the federal money will be spent on personal protective equipment, and $613,000 for additional cleaning and caretaking supplies.

Buchanan said, “We appreciate that the province distributed these funds leaving it to school jurisdictions to make the best use of the funding following federal guidelines. These are significant dollars, and without those, we would have to utilize our limited reserve funds.”

She added the public school division has worked diligently in back-to-school preparations.

“Over 90 per cent of our students have returned to at-school learning, which started Sept. 1 with staggered entry of students…

“Initial response from students, parents and staff has been overwhelmingly positive.”

Red Deer public schools

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

Just Posted

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau holds a press conference at Rideau Cottage during the COVID pandemic in Ottawa on Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Feds spending plan heads to confidence vote as provinces seek more health-care cash

OTTAWA — Provinces are criticizing the federal Liberals for failing to signal… Continue reading

In this Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2020 file photo, Herman Termeer, 54, stands on the roof of his home as the Blue Ridge Fire burns along the hillside in Chino Hills, Calif. An overheating world obliterated weather records in 2020 — an extreme year for hurricanes, wildfires, heat waves, floods, droughts and ice melt — the United Nations’ weather agency reported Wednesday, Dec. 2, 2020. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
UN calls on humanity to end ‘war on nature,’ go carbon-free

As an extreme year for hurricanes, wildfires and heat waves comes to… Continue reading

John Lambert
Military identifies remains of Newfoundland soldier killed in Belgium in 1917

OTTAWA — More than 100 years after a young soldier from Newfoundland… Continue reading

Military police officers carry a bag filled with money left behind by armed bank robbers, in Criciuma, Santa Catarina state, Brazil, Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2020. Dozens of criminals armed with assault rifles invaded the city in southern Brazil overnight and took control of the streets as they assaulted a local bank. (Guilherme Hahn/Futura Press via AP)
Massed Brazilian bank robbers attack another city, kill 1

RIO DE JANEIRO — A large gang of heavily armed bank robbers… Continue reading

(Black Press file photo.)
Red Deer city council holds closed-door discussion about proposed aquatics centre

Recommended design, cost and location won’t be made public until next spring

Team Manitoba celebrate after defeating Team Ontario to win the Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Moose Jaw, Sask., Sunday, Feb. 23, 2020. Curling Canada wants Calgary's Canada Olympic Park to be a curling hub for the season's top events. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
CP NewsAlert: Calgary facility set to become curling hub during pandemic

CP NewsAlert: Calgary facility set to become curling hub during pandemic

Toronto FC coach Greg Vanney watches late in the second half of the team's MLS Cup soccer match against the Seattle Sounders on Sunday, Nov. 10, 2019, in Seattle. Vanney has stepped down as coach of Toronto FC. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP Photo-Elaine Thompson
Toronto FC coach Greg Vanney steps down, says it’s the right time to move on

Toronto FC coach Greg Vanney steps down, says it’s the right time to move on

Hamilton Forge FC's Giuliano Frano (8) heads the ball against CD Olimpia's Jorge Benguche (9) during Scotiabank CONCACAF League 2019 second half soccer action in Hamilton, Ontario on Thursday, August 22, 2019. Forge FC looks to win its way into the Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League on Tuesday when it takes on Haiti's Arcahaie FC in the quarterfinals of the CONCACAF League, a 22-team feeder competition that sends six clubs to CONCACAF's elite club tournament. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Peter Power
Forge FC loses penalty shootout to Haitian side in CONCACAF League quarterfinal

Forge FC loses penalty shootout to Haitian side in CONCACAF League quarterfinal

Public health must balance science and society: former top doctor

Public health must balance science and society: former top doctor

California boat captain indicted in fire that killed 34

California boat captain indicted in fire that killed 34

President Donald Trump participates in a video teleconference call with members of the military on Thanksgiving, Thursday, Nov. 26, 2020, at the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
Trump headed to Georgia as runoff boost, but also a threat

Trump headed to Georgia as runoff boost, but also a threat

Flames and exhaust trail behind a Long March-5 rocket carrying the Chang'e 5 lunar mission after it lifted off at the Wenchang Space Launch Center in Wenchang in southern China's Hainan Province, early Tuesday, Nov. 24, 2020. China launched an ambitious mission on Tuesday to bring back material from the moon's surface for the first time in more than 40 years — an undertaking that could boost human understanding of the moon and of the solar system more generally. (AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein)
China spacecraft lands on moon to bring rocks back to Earth

China spacecraft lands on moon to bring rocks back to Earth

FILE - In this March 16, 2020, file photo, vials used by pharmacists to prepare syringes used on the first day of a first-stage safety study clinical trial of the potential vaccine for COVID-19 rest on a lab table at the Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute in Seattle. An influential scientific panel on Tuesday, Dec. 1, is set to tackle one of the most pressing questions in the U.S. coronavirus epidemic: When the first doses of COVID-19 vaccine become available, who should be at the front of the line for shots? (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)
US panel: 1st vaccines to health care workers, nursing homes

US panel: 1st vaccines to health care workers, nursing homes

Most Read