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Education Development Charges

Education Development Charges (EDCs) are funds that school boards can charge on new developments. The current regulation establishes that EDCs can be used to purchase land for future school sites, not to support the cost of building new schools or renovating existing ones. 

Some areas of Toronto have experienced significant high-density residential development over the past twelve years, which has resulted in substantial pressure on critical public infrastructure serving the area such as local schools, public transit and roads. 

The City of Toronto anticipates the construction and occupation of more than 214,000 new residential units over the next 15 years and more than 313,000 new units by mid-2041. Most of the new residences are expected to be high-rise developments, in areas where there is inadequate space to accommodate new students.

While other school boards in Ontario are allowed to collect EDCs, the TDSB does not qualify because it has excess capacity when assessed on a district-wide basis, regardless of significant pressures and challenges faced in many neighborhood schools. This puts the TDSB at a disadvantage. 

Questions & Answers

Why can’t the TDSB access EDCs?

In order to qualify for Educational Development Charges (EDCs), a school board must show that the number of students that it needs to accommodate is larger than the space available on a district-wide basis, regardless of its inability to accommodate students in neighborhood schools. Many of our schools are over capacity as a result of significant residential intensification in certain areas.  

EDCs are a critical funding tool that would help the TDSB meet growth-related infrastructure needs. In order for the TDSB to be able to access EDCs, Ontario Reg. 20/98 needs to be amended.

How would EDCs help the TDSB improve its schools?

Lack of sufficient space in local schools in some areas of the City has forced the TDSB to adopt different accommodation strategies for managing enrolment growth, including redirecting students from new residential developments to other TDSB schools located outside the area, the use of portables, and program and school boundary changes.

Based on the total number of units under construction, proposed or planned across the city, the TDSB could generate revenue of approximately $350 million over the next 15 years to help fund growth-related infrastructure needs, which would benefit thousands of students and many communities across Toronto. However, access to EDCs won’t replace the need for a new provincial funding strategy to reduce our Renewal Needs Backlog and maintain and operate our schools.

What is the TDSB advocating for?

The TDSB is advocating for the Ontario Government to amend the Education Development Charges regulation (Ontario Reg. 20/98) under the Education Act to allow the TDSB to collect EDCs to help support urgent school infrastructure needs and reduce overcrowding in high-growth areas of the City. In addition, the TDSB is asking to expand the definition of “education land costs” to include construction costs for new buildings and other costs to meet growth-related infrastructure needs such as additions and renovations to existing schools.

Groups such as Fix our Schools have joined forces with school boards to advocate for additional provincial funding. Recognizing that schools are key to strong and vibrant communities, the City of Toronto has also asked the provincial government to amend the existing regulation to allow the TDSB to collect EDCs from developers.

How can parents help?

We encourage you to spread the word and send a letter to your local MPP and the Minister of Education to advocate for the Ontario Government to amend the Education Development Charges regulation (Ontario Reg. 20/98) under the Education Act to allow the TDSB to collect EDCs.  

Find your MPP contact info

Contact the Minister of Education

Our Mission
To enable all students to reach high levels of achievement and well-being
and to acquire the knowledge, skills
and values they need to become responsible, contributing members of
a democratic and sustainable society.
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