he Peel District School Board will close “about 100” music and French-language classrooms this year due to shrinking cleaning budgets, the board’s director of education says.
In place of dedicated classrooms, class supplies for vocal music and French lessons will be loaded onto carts and wheeled into the students’ main classrooms.
“From an efficiency perspective, [the government] would say, you don’t need that French classroom, because French could be delivered in the regular classrooms,” Tony Pontes said.
The closures are rolling out at elementary and secondary schools in the district.
In the past, Peel received about $5-million a year to clean and maintain classrooms that were empty or only in use for a portion of the day.
This year, that funding was cut by $2.8 million, an amount that Pontes said was impossible to recoup in other parts of the board’s budget.
“It would have certainly meant cuts in staff and programs so we decided that it was better to maintain [them] and not clean those classrooms and close them.”