The Begbie View Elementary School construction site was a hive of activity on the morning of Aug. 28. A quick count showed more that 60 construction-related vehicles parked out front alone. The new elementary school is set to open for the school year.

B.C. education by the numbers

The school year is upon us. Here's a 'by the numbers' warm up on education numbers in B.C.

B.C. education minister George Abbott is leading the class on a media conference call today at 2:30 p.m. In order to get everyone warmed up for the new school year, the B.C. Ministry of Education provided this ‘by the numbers’ list on education in B.C.

We’re providing it as a warm up for the school year — and there may be a quiz later:

— Revelstoke Times Review

VICTORIA – The following facts provide a snapshot of British Columbia’s public education system:

Enrolment for the 2012-13 school year

* 534,691 estimated full-time public school students this September, compared to 540,696 for the September 2011 estimate (6,005 fewer students).

* Since 2000-01, there has been a decrease of more than 63,000 students.

* 58,962 estimated English Language Learning (ELL) students – 202 fewer than last year.

* 54,031 estimated Aboriginal students – 258 fewer than last year.

* 23,832 estimated full-time students with special needs for 2012-13 – 38 fewer than last year.

* 6,903 estimated non-graduated adult students – 613 more than last year.

Class Size

* At 16.7, B.C.’s ratio of students per teacher/administrator has remained relatively stable over the past decade.

* For the sixth consecutive year, more than 94 per cent of classes in school districts throughout B.C. had 30 or fewer students.

* In 2011-12, 99 per cent of classes had 32 or fewer students.

* A total of 4,485 classes had 15 or fewer students in 2011-12.

* There were 259 more full time equivalent education assistants in 2011-12 compared to the year before, bringing the total to 9,037.

Funding

* Estimated operating funding to school districts is a record $4.725 billion this year – a $4-million increase over 2011-12.

* Since 2000-01, government has increased funding to B.C. public schools by nearly $1.4 billion: a 26 per cent increase in operating funding ($981 million) and $407 million in one-time grants.

* The average per-pupil funding for 2012-13 is now an estimated $8,493, up 36 per cent since 2000-01.

* Total funding for students with special needs is now an estimated $866 million for 2012-13.

* The new Learning Improvement Fund (LIF) will provide an additional $195 million over three years for school districts to:

o Hire additional teachers and special education assistants.

o Provide additional teaching time.

o Support professional development and training to help teachers meet complex needs in their classrooms.

* To support BC’s Education Plan, $10.7 million is being provided to support early reading in every school district for students in kindergarten to Grade 3.

Early Learning

* StrongStart BC centres build on the success of Ready, Set, Learn, a kindergarten readiness program.

* As of September 2012, there are 326 funded StrongStart BC programs.

* In 2011-12, there were more than 643,000 visits to StrongStart BC programs with more than 33,000 children participating. That’s 2,000 more children participating and an increase of 50,000 visits compared to 2010-11.

Achievement

* The provincial six-year completion rate was 81 per cent in 2010-11.

* The average pass rate for courses with required provincial exams was 96 per cent.

* 990 students received a B.C. school completion certificate in 2010-11. These certificates recognize the accomplishments of students, including students with special needs, who succeed in meeting the goals of their educational program other than graduation.

* 78,650 students took at least one online (distributed learning) course in 2011-12. That compares to just 33,022 students four years ago.

Healthy Schools

* In April 2012, government announced a $1-million expansion for the BC School Fruit and Vegetable Nutritional Program. It is expected that an additional 75 schools will join the program by September 2012, and a further 75 schools will join by January 2013, benefitting up to 27,000 more children each year. This would bring the total participating schools to 1,484.

* Over the past two years, government has provided $6.5 million for the School Fruit and Vegetable Nutritional Program.

* The Guidelines for Food and Beverage Sales in BC Schools are designed to maximize students’ access to healthier options and fully eliminate the sale of unhealthy foods and beverages in B.C. schools.

* Through the Daily Physical Activity requirements, students in all school districts are required to achieve daily activity targets.

o Students in kindergarten to Grade 7 will engage in 30 minutes of daily physical activity at school.

o Students in grades 10 to 12 will engage in 150 minutes of physical activity per week as part of their Graduation Transition program.

Capital

* Since 2001, more than $4 billion have been committed to school capital and maintenance projects throughout British Columbia.

* Since 2001, government has spent more than $2.1 billion to complete 93 new and replacement schools, 150 additions, 27 renovation projects and 22 site acquisitions throughout B.C. All new and replacement schools have been constructed to meet the latest seismic standards.

* The B.C. government is currently working to upgrade, replace and build a total of 60 schools throughout B.C. over the next four years. The total cost of these projects is approximately $1.5 billion.

* Since 2001, government has spent more than $840 million on seismic upgrading of schools in 37 school districts in B.C. This is part of the most comprehensive seismic plan ever undertaken by a B.C. government. To date, 143 seismic upgrade projects are complete, under construction or proceeding to construction, and another 26 seismic upgrade projects have been approved to proceed to planning.

Independent schools

* There are a total of 350 independent schools in B.C.

* Independent schools enrol more than 73,000 students, which is approximately 11 per cent of B.C.’s kindergarten to Grade 12 population.

 

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