École branchée has leafed through (digitally) for you the 2022-2023 budget for Quebec tabled yesterday by the Minister of Finance, Éric Girard. Here is what we found that mainly concerns education and digital.
The education section begins as follows:
The Quebec government's two budgetary priorities for education are
1- Supporting Student Success and Retention
The government is continuing its efforts to achieve the goal of having 90 % of youth obtain a diploma or qualification. To achieve this goal, additional investments of nearly 1.6 billion $ are planned over the next five years, including:
- 829 million to empower every student to reach their full potential;
- 204 million to ensure the attraction and retention of school staff;
- 267 million to improve the school building stock;
- 250 million to get Quebecers moving.
2- Improve access and graduation from higher education
Investments of $1.2 billion over the next five years will make higher education more accessible by providing increased financial support and reducing debt. Measures will also support students throughout their journey and increase the number of graduates in higher education.
Supporting Student Success and Retention
"The government wants to give each student all the tools necessary to develop his or her potential. Particular emphasis is placed on creating conditions that are conducive to the educational success of students, especially those with special needs or in vulnerable situations.
For example, as part of the 2022-2023 budget, the government is planning investments of $220.9 million $ by 2026-2027 to support the success of all students. Details on how this funding will be used have yet to be released.
Other measures announced include:
- financial support for partners in the education network who contribute, through their actions, to student retention and success;
- Enhancement of the mentoring program launched in 2021 in the context of the pandemic (315M$ by 2026-2017, including 55M$ for 2022-2023);
- modernizing vocational training programs (including making them "state of the art");
- support for digital learning (158.2M$ by 2026-2027, including 34.6M$ for 2022-2023).
Ensure the attraction and retention of school personnel
"The workforce shortage has highlighted the challenges facing the education system and the central role that school personnel, particularly teachers, play in the academic success of students."
Thus, the 2022-2023 budget provides 203.7 million $ by 2026-2027 for:
- attract experienced workers from the education system;
- increase in-service training for school personnel;
- support schools in the recruitment and supervision of future teachers
With regard to the in-service training of school personnel, the government plans to invest 55 million $ by 2026-2027 to cover both the costs of training and the release of teachers (8M$ in 2022-2023). It should be noted that the Education Act requires teachers to complete 30 hours of in-service training per two-year period.
Access to higher education
In the section of the budget plan devoted to higher education, the government agrees that "the challenges of distance education have highlighted the importance for institutions to have information technology tools to ensure the continuity of quality educational services.
The government wishes to deploy Campus numérique, a showcase that will bring together all of Quebec's distance education offerings in higher education; 1.9 million $ is planned for 2022-2023 for this purpose. Additional investments will support a pole of expertise in distance education and improve access to digital resources in higher education. A total of $12.1 million $ is planned by 2026-2027.
Finally, 24.3 million $ is planned in 2022-2023 (131.9 million $ by 2026-2027) to support digital transformation and improve funding for information resources at higher education institutions. In particular, this should make it possible to strengthen the security of institutions' information systems and meet the increased need for maintenance of IT equipment.
The entire 2021-2022 budget plan is available online.