At a Special Budget Meeting, the Saanich Board of Education passed a deficit budget. Unlike other "deficit budgets" sometimes passed symbolically, they did not pass a balanced budget. They passed a single budget, one that is above the available funding by close to $2.828 million dollars. This amount represents $328,000 worth of proposed cuts not made, and an additional $2.5 million to restore class size and composition and other eroded services. This Restoration Budget passed by a vote of 3 to 2 (2 trustees were absent).
The Board passed two additional motions as well. One motion requesting that government immediately address the inequities in the current funding formula, and another directing the Board Chair to submit this budget directly to the Minister (they cannot submit it using the normal process as they were unable to pass a budget bylaw, nor can this budget be signed by the secretary-treasurer).
It is exciting that a Board has taken a firm stand to say to government that class sizes need to be restored and respected in light of the recent court decision. I hope other Boards will follow suit.
Also read commentary from Maple Ridge Trustee Stepan Vdovine: http://www.vdovine.ca/2011/04/will-the-wave-turn-after-saanich-trustees-refuse-to-submit-balanced-budget/