While the tough new policy targets many of almost 800 schools across Ontario whose student loads fall short of capacity by a total of nearly 327,000 students, it is the Toronto board that will be hardest hit by the scrapping of top-up dollars for declining enrolment.
Across its 461 elementary schools, the board has 48,030 fewer students than its official capacity. In its 98 high schools, it is operating 23,397 students under capacity. Those statistics leave the board’s enrolment falling short by the rough equivalent of 143 elementary schools and 28 high schools at their current size.
“Closing anywhere near that many schools would cause destruction to our system and we’d start to go down the path of American cities that have had the heart taken out of them by losing schools,” warned board chair Chris Bolton.