The Strategy and Planning department provides educational and land use planning services and information for staff, parents, school communities, and all relevant levels of government.
Long-Term Program and Accommodation Strategy
A key responsibility of the department is to develop the Long-Term Program and Accommodation Strategy, a document that was first created in 2014 and is refreshed each year. The strategy provides an approach to program and accommodation planning with a ten-year timeframe that allows for responsiveness and flexibility in a changing environment. It is a roadmap for the future that identifies future studies that could lead to Accommodation Reviews.
Following the annual process to develop the Long-Term Program and Accommodation Strategy and the Capital Budget Plan, TDSB staff determines areas of projected enrolment growth and areas of decline, utilization rates of operating schools both in the short term and the long term, renewal needs, potential closures and new school construction or additions. This analysis could lead to Accommodation Reviews.
Accommodation Reviews are managed by the Strategy and Planning department with participation by superintendents of education, principals, central staff, and trustees. Some reviews include community consultation processes that involve parents/guardians, students, and the school community and others involve staff only.
Reviews with Community Consultation:
- Boundary Change Review
- Program Area Review
- Property Review
- Pupil Accommodation Review
To learn more about these review processes, please visit the Accommodation Reviews page.
- Child Card Occupancy Review
- Emerging Capital Priorities Project
- Residential Redirection
The department manages the collection, analysis and reporting of enrolment data (both actual and projected). Enrolment projections include short-term and long-term data at the individual school and system levels. These projections are used to determine staffing levels and facility utilization -- whether a school will be over or underutilized.
Facility Space Management
The department leads processes to balance enrolments across schools and uses tools such as making better use of existing school space, timetable changes, portable shifts, grade changes, and boundary changes to ensure space is used efficiently.
- This assists staff in identifying operating schools with unused space (classrooms) that could potentially accommodate facility partnerships; those that could be declared surplus to the needs of the Board; and those that may require new construction or additions.
The Strategy and Planning department identifies areas of sustained overcrowding where school additions or new builds may be required and submits business cases to the Ministry of Education to request funding. It also completes analyses to determine if school properties should be retained for future use or declared surplus to the needs of the TDSB and sold. These revenue sources and expenditure are included in the Capital Budget Plan that is refreshed and approved by the Board of Trustees each year.
Land Use Planning
The roles and responsibilities for Land Use Planning have been divided between the TDSB and the TLC (Toronto Lands Corporation, the real estate arm of the TDSB). TDSB staff assesses the impacts of new residential developments on the accommodation of students by projecting future student populations that could be generated from proposed developments and determining whether they could be accommodated in existing schools or if new school sites would be needed. TLC staff represents the interests of the TDSB at the municipal and provincial level by reviewing and responding to new residential development applications and municipal land use policies and studies as well as attending hearings and public meetings.