Administering Government's annual and long-term capital planning program for the public education system; assisting boards of education in the planning and management of their inventories of school facilities, portable classrooms and school buses; and administering the Government's risk management program for schools.
Goals and Objectives
- Develop Ministry capital programs that support Government's and capital investment strategies
- Ensure school boards are undertaking appropriate long-term capital planning
- Ensure equity in the educational program space provided for students province-wide
- Ensure School Protection Program loss claims meet Ministry's capital funding criteria
- Establish a facility audit process to ensure schools are appropriately and cost-effectively maintained, provide appropriate level of environment quality, and meet building life expectancies
Major Program Activities
- Setting capital planning policies and procedures
- Providing capital planning instructions
- Assisting boards of education in developing Five-Year Capital Plans
- Reviewing and evaluating boards' capital project requests for:
- Ministerial support;
- presentation to Capital Planning Secretariat/Treasury Board;
- inclusion into Ministry's Consolidated Capital Plan
- Managing transportation and portable classroom programs
- Managing capital asset inventories and fiscal framework data collection
- Processing of property loss claims under the Schools Protection Program
- Administering dispositions and long-term leases of board capital assets
- Revising educational specifications, including area standards and school site size
- Management of capital information and data
Roles and Responsibilities
The British Columbia K-12 public education system is jointly managed by the provincial government and the 60 elected boards of education. In terms of funding school building and improvements, Government and school boards share responsibility for ensuring that public schools provide the best possible learning environment for students. At the same time, the school system is legally required to provide a complete and accurate accounting of its use of public funds. Consequently, there is a shared accountability objective to allocate resources in a cost-effective manner. In addition, an equity objective seeks to have resources allocated fairly.
Government funds the capital costs of school construction through debt-service grants. The major components of Government's capital program are site acquisition, construction of new schools, additions to existing schools, and renovations to existing schools. In addition to capital funding allocations, boards receive an annual facility grant to cover the costs of renovations to extend the useful life of school buildings.
Under the public education system in British Columbia, the provincial government is responsible for:
School boards are responsible for:
- providing area standards for the design and construction of schools;
- allocating funds for capital projects fairly, based on school district needs.
- designing and constructing schools buildings to specified standards, including LEED Gold;
- ensuring that school buildings and grounds are safe, secure and properly maintained; and,
- operating and utilizing schools as efficiently as possible.
Each year school boards submit five-year capital plans that include details on school building projects they wish to undertake. Each capital request is analyzed and assigned a priority ranking. The criteria used to determine priority are applied consistently, thereby ensuring that proposed capital projects are ranked fairly. Based on detailed analysis of district submissions, government establishes an overall capital budget for schools. Resources are allocated to the highest-priority projects, and school boards are advised which projects may proceed.