Layoff notices were issued to 13 Waterloo Region District School Board teachers Wednesday.

School board officials confirm that the layoffs affected teachers in the first year of their contracts and teaching in Waterloo Region high schools.

WRDSB executive superintendent Mark Schinkel says declining enrolment prompted the layoffs.

“If we were to bring back all the teachers who are currently employed in our school board next year, we would have too many in place,” he tells CTV.

The school board’s high school enrolment figures are expected to see a drop of about 500 students for 2013-14.

Schinkel attributes the decline to demographic changes, with fewer students graduating Grade 8 than in past years, and says it’s unlikely parent dissatisfaction with teachers’ labour troubles played a significant part in the drop.

Schinkel says the teachers affected may be brought back into the system if other teachers decide to retire or take the 2013-14 school year off.

Waterloo Region OSSTF president Rob Gascho says he hopes that happens.

“Retirements are still coming in for next year, there are a couple of months still for that to happen, and so over the next couple of months people will be pulled back into those positions,” he says.

The school board has yet to make decisions on staffing at elementary schools.