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COVID-19 and Temporary School Library Lay-offs

COVID-19 and Temporary School Library Lay-offs

April 29, 2020

As with municipalities and public libraries, school boards are dealing with the effects of physical distancing, the closing of school facilities, and the suspension of in-school education.

In response to pressure from provincial governments to find budget savings, a number of school boards are announcing the temporary lay-offs of employees.

Based on media reports, news releases, and emails with officials, the following table compiles numbers of affected school library workers:

ProvinceSchool Board# of Employees Affected 
AlbertaCalgary Board of Education222 Library Assistants
1 Library Resource / Technology Specialist
2 Library Technicians
Details (Apr 9)
AlbertaEdmonton Public Schools65 library techniciansDetails (Apr 18)
AlbertaPembina Hills School Division10 librarians (mix of full-time and part-time)Details (Apr 6)
ManitobaPembina Trails School Division32 library techniciansDetails (Apr 17)

In some school boards, lay-offs of employees, including school library staff, have been announced but without reporting library-specific numbers:

ProvinceSchool Board# of Employees Affected 
AlbertaElk Island Public Schools189 permanent employees and 128 hourly & short-term staff

"Those who are receiving layoff notices include a wide range of non-teaching and support-staff groups."
Details (Apr 20)
AlbertaHigh Prairie School Division150 people

Includes school bus drivers, educational assistants, secretaries, library technicians, central office support staff, and transportation support staff
Details (Apr 6)
AlbertaHoly Spirit Catholic School Division181 staff members

Includes Early Learning Educational Assistants and Early Learning Speech Language Assistants, as well as Child and Youth Care Workers, Library Clerks, Library Technicians and Receptionists
Details (Apr 3)
AlbertaLethbridge School Division300 employees

Includes some education assistants and advanced education support staff, learning commons facilitators, career practitioners, and some administrative support professionals
Details (Apr 3)
AlbertaNorthern Gateway Public Schools130 staff (approx)

Includes educational assistants and learning commons facilitators
Details (Apr 23)
AlbertaRocky View Schools 240 support staff - include select Education Centre support staff, as well as school-based learning commons staff and receptionistsDetails (Apr 9)
AlbertaSt. Thomas Aquinas Roman Catholic School Division147 staff

Including educational assistants, FSLWs, librarians, custodians, and information and technology staff.
Details (Apr 21)
ManitobaBorder Land School Division"about half of its support staff"

Includes educational, vocational and admin assistants, bus drivers, mechanics, maintenance staff, librarians, custodians, and cafeteria workers

In 2018/19, the division had 418.9 FTEs employees of which 221.9 FTEs were neither teaching personnel nor administration/management.
Details (Apr 22)
ManitobaRiver East Transcona School Division200 bus drivers, custodial aides, library technicians "and other support staff"Details (Apr 24)
ManitobaSt. James-Assiniboia School Division383 educational support staff

Including bus drivers, education and "other non-teaching" assistants and library technicians
Details (Apr 24) will continue to report on temporary lay-offs in school libraries as the COVID-19 pandemic continues.

If there are school library lay-offs not reflected in the tables above, please let us know. Email us at

See also: COVID-19 and Temporary Public Library Lay-offs

One reply on “COVID-19 and Temporary School Library Lay-offs”

  • C Fowler says:

    The Edmonton Public School figures only reflect permanent staff. Substitute library techs were laid off in Mid March along with other on call positions such as educational assistants. This number doesn’t include library techs on leave of absence as well.

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