April 3, 2021
Last week, we shared news with you that the Government of Alberta has released the draft K-6 curriculum, with full implementation set for September of 2022.
We spoke how we were encouraged that Alberta’s proposed new curriculum for young students focuses on literacy, numeracy and practical skills including computer coding, budgets and public speaking. At the same time, we fully understand there are some concerns in Social Studies, and the age appropriateness and omission of curriculum lessons regarding diversity, religion, and Truth and Reconciliation. St. Paul Education fully supports the TRC Call to Action to make curriculum on residential schools, Treaties, and the contributions of Indigenous and Métis people to Canada a mandatory education requirement for all students, starting in kindergarten.
Piloting of the draft curriculum is set to begin this September across the province. Piloting a draft curriculum allows school divisions and teachers an opportunity to identify both its strengths and areas where further refinement is needed.
Last week, we said that St. Paul Education teachers would have the opportunity to participate in piloting the draft curriculum should they choose. However, since that time we have received considerable, concerning feedback from parents, teachers, and other valued education partners about the overall draft curriculum and specifically components in the Social Studies area. Next week, our staff return from Spring break and we will be collecting more feedback from our teachers about the draft curriculum, our school councils, and we will also be consulting with other school divisions. Of course, we will be listening closely to feedback provided by parents not only in our own division, but from across the province. A final decision will be made in the upcoming weeks if we will participate in only aspects of the pilot curriculum or choose to not take part at all. This decision will also take into consideration the tremendous pressures Covid has placed on our staff and community over the past twelve months.
According to the Alberta Education website, public input on the draft curriculum will stay open until spring 2022. We are also aware that there will be additional targeted consultations. Once again, we encourage all stakeholders to get appropriately involved in this critically important process, and we will provide you with a further update soon.