Toronto school board weighs costs of back-to-school, some as high as $250M

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Ontario's largest school board is weighing the costs of a full return to school come September, saying one model would come with a $250 million pricetag for elementary schools alone.

The Ministry of Education has given boards until Aug. 4 to provide back-to-school plans that take the COVID-19 pandemic into account, and the Toronto District School Board says some options come at a significant cost.

In a planning document, the board says if elementary students are divided into groups of 15 and there aren't any schedule changes, it will need to hire nearly 2,500 more teachers at a cost of $248.9 million.

 The TDSB says if it cuts the school day by 48 minutes, it will only need to hire 988 teachers and the cost will be cut to $98.5 million.