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Sask. schools left in the dark about funding, budget deadline extension

Despite promises of more money and an extension to the budget deadline for schools, the Saskatchewan government has been mum on details.

Earlier this month, a Ministry of Education spokesperson said school divisions would be granted a deadline extension for submitting their budgets for the next school year.

As of this week, multiple school divisions told CTV News they hadn't heard anything and were still busy trying to create their budgets based on the money they were promised in the provincial budget.

"We have not received any specific information from the Ministry of Education as to the extended deadline and additional funding. We cannot approve a final budget until we understand what additional funding is coming from the province," a Saskatoon Public Schools spokesperson said in an email on Tuesday.

As of Wednesday morning, the Chinook School Division said it hadn't received "any details regarding a deadline extension or additional funding."

"We are currently working with our original budgeting deadlines," a division spokesperson said in a statement.

The Ministry of Education has not responded to CTV News' requests for comment.

The province's divisions are typically required to submit balanced budgets by June 30, a task which the divisions says has been complicated by the uncertainty about how much money they will receive from the province.

Following an outcry over the education funding in this year's provincial budget, Premier Scott Moe promised more money would be coming to the divisions.

"There is no detail on how much money will be provided nor when it will be given to school divisions. This uncertainty makes our planning very difficult," Greater Saskatoon Catholic Schools (GSCS) said in a letter sent to parents in mid-May.

GSCS and other divisions argued what the government described as "record spending" for education amounted to a less-than-one per cent increase — insufficient to handle growing enrollment.

As one example of budgetary pressures, the Chinook division said it's receiving hundreds of dollars less per student than during the 2015-16 school year.

The letter from GSCS, along with similar letters to parents and caregivers sent by other school divisions, outlined cuts to programming and additional fees for parents.

The Minister of Education is expected to speak at a news conference Thursday afternoon in Saskatoon. Top Stories

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