MPP, Ottawa Centre: Education investments in our community

Education is very important. It is the foundation our kids need to succeed. The Government of Ontario continues to invest in our future, providing communities with the tools and resources they require to fulfill their shared responsibility to our kids. With full-day kindergarten, the 30-percent tuition grant, and our new Youth Jobs Strategy, we are helping our kids from their first day of school to their first day on the job.

Since 2003, the Ontario government has invested $12 billion to make schools better places. Our government believes that when students are in good educational environments, they can focus on learning and personal achievement.

This year, Ontario has approved seven new school and renovation projects in the Ottawa area to provide pupils and students modern and improved places to learn.  The four school boards in Ottawa are receiving almost $60 million this year. They have received nearly $890 million in capital funding since 2003. Among the beneficiaries of this funding are Broadview Public School and Mutchmor Public School, both of which are located in Ottawa Centre.

Broadview Public School was built in 1926 in Westboro, and desperately needed to be re-built. Last month I was very excited to jointhe Minister of Education to announce our government would provide $14 million in capital funding to rebuild Broadview. My gratitude goes to the parents, students, teachers and the entire Broadview school community for their tireless advocacy to ensure our kids got the school they deserved.

Similarly, last year Mutchmor Public School received $4.6 million to support construction of a new, permanent addition.  These funds will help alleviate some of the capacity challenges the Glebe community has faced in recent years. Mutchmor’s success story is yet another example of the entire community coming together to help build a better Ottawa Centre.

In addition to investing in improved learning spaces, our government is also investing in programing. Ontario provides operating grants which allocates annual funding to school boards to support educational programs and services, staffing and maintenance of school facilities. I am very happy to report that both Ottawa-Carleton District School Board and Ottawa Catholic School Board are receiving increases of more than three percent compared to last year’s funding, more than 55 percent since 2003.

Last Fall marked the fourth year of full-day kindergarten. The response from parents, students and educators continues to be incredible. While we have always believed in the difference full-day kindergarten could make in the lives of students, I am delighted to report on the results of a recent study that confirms what we always believed — full-day kindergarten works.

This study, conducted by Queens and McMaster universities, compared children with two years of full-day kindergarten instruction with children with none. It showed full-day kindergarten:

  • Reduces risks in social competence development from 10.5% to 5.2%;

  • Reduces risks in language and cognitive development from 16.4% to 4.3%; and

  • Reduces risks in communication skills and general knowledge development from 10.5% to 5.6%.

Giving the province’s youngest learners the tools they need to succeed in Grade 1 and beyond is part of the Ontario government’s plan to prepare students for a productive and successful future and build a fair and prosperous society.

For more information please visit www.ontario.ca/education or www.yasirnaqvimpp.com.  Please do not hesitate to contact me at my Community Office at ynaqvi.mpp.co@liberal.ola.org or 613-722-6414 if you have any questions or concerns.

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