Nova Scotia to add 173 staff to support inclusive education:Churchill

Nova Scotia is spending $15-million to provide 173 more inclusive education specialists, teachers and non-teaching staff this September.

The money for year two of a five-year rollout of changes for inclusive education, includes more than $3-million for training and development while the province will also work on a pilot program to train education assistants to work with students who have autism with Autism Nova Scotia.

Education Minister Zach Churchill says the additional supports added this year include 18 guidance counsellors, 11 autism teacher specialists, 30 education assistants, 32 child and youth care practitioners and 13 African Nova Scotia and Mi'kmaq student support workers among others.

Cynthia Carroll, executive director of Autism Nova Scotia, says her organization is encouraged by the diversity of the positions announced, and believes building multi-disciplinary teams that work in collaboration with classroom teachers will ``benefit all students.''

The province added 191 positions to schools in the last fiscal year.

The new supports bring the total to 364 new, inclusive education positions added to the education system.