Even absent a surplus, if BC increased its debt to fund education it would cost about 4.2%, whereas economists estimate rates of return to education investment in the double digits.
So there is no obvious financial barrier to investing in children. We do that by having smaller class sizes and well-resourced teachers, which is what the teachers’ strike is really about. In fact the teachers’ bargaining proposal would see them lose money due to inflation over the life of the deal. As of 2011, BC already had the lowest paid teachers and the biggest class sizes in Canada.
Those smaller class sizes – better working conditions – are what teachers in private schools get, and the flip-side for those students is opportunities for enriched learning that pay off over a lifetime. Presumably, this is why the Premier’s son attends BC’s most elite private school.
In case anyone’s got any questions about what the labour standoff in B.C. is really about.
Oh, and look: the NGO that produced this inconvenient little essay is under audit by the Canada Revenue Agency. Must be a coincidence.