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Deani Van Pelt

Director, Barbara Mitchell Centre for Improvement in Education, Fraser Institute

Deani Van Pelt is Director of the Barbara Mitchell Centre for Improvement in Education at the Fraser Institute.   Following her studies at McMaster University (B.Comm.) and the University of Toronto (B.Ed.) she taught mathematics and business subjects in both public and private secondary schools.  She then completed her M.Ed. and Ph.D. in Education at The University of Western Ontario where she was awarded the Bishop Townshend Gold Medal Award for excellence in graduate studies.  From 2006 to 2014 she served at Redeemer University College, first as Assistant Professor and then as Associate Professor of Education. During this time she led several international research collaborations funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, taught a variety of courses including Systems of Education, and was Director of Teacher Education for four years.  Her research and publications in Canadian education policy include studies in home schooling, independent schooling and education funding.  She has presented numerous times over the last two decades in academic and practitioner conferences across North America. Recently a co-author of the Fraser Institute studies Education Spending in Canada: What’s Really Happening? and Financial Savings: Restructuring Education in Ontario Using the British Columbia Model, she continues to appear on TV and in radio talk shows across Canada.  Her work has been featured in many Canadian newspapers including the National Post and Globe and Mail and she has served as an expert witness.

Recent Research by Deani Van Pelt

— Oct 6, 2016
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Understanding the Increases in Education Spending in Public Schools in Canada, 2016 edition

Understanding the Increases in Education Spending in Public Schools in Canada, 2016 edition spotlights increases in education spending between 2004/2005 and 2013/2014. It finds that nearly 80 per cent of all increases in public school spending in Canada over the past decade went to salaries, pensions and benefits.

— Sep 20, 2016
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Independent Schools in British Columbia: Myths and Realities

Independent Schools in British Columbia: Myths and Realities finds that calls to eliminate funding for independent schools are based on misperceptions. In fact, more than 90 per cent of independent schools in B.C. are not elite preparatory institutions, and students in independent schools receive, on average, less than half the government funding per-pupil than students in public schools. Instead of taking away resources from public schools, cutting the partial funding independent schools receive could actually increase the financial strain on public schools and increase costs for B.C. taxpayers.

— Sep 1, 2016
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Education Spending and Public Student Enrolment in Canada

Education Spending and Public School Enrolment in Canada, 2016 Edition, finds that spending on public schools in Canada has increased dramatically over the past decade even as the number of students has declined. Across the country, spending on public schools increased more than 40 per cent, from $44.3 billion in 2004/2005 to nearly $62.6 billion in 2013/2014, a decade that saw a 4.2 per cent decline in the number of students enrolled in public schools in Canada. On a per-student basis, spending increased from $9,876 to $12,427 (after accounting for price changes), a dramatic 25.8 per cent increase over the same time.