Above: Minister Eggen announces proposed School Act amendments with supporters. – GOA Photo
by Morinville News Staff
The Government of Alberta says new legislation would ensure students and communities benefit from more consistent and clear rules in the education system.
The School Amendment Act creates new professional standards for principals and superintendents, something the government says would ensure they are equipped to lead modern, inclusive schools.
Proposed amendments to the School Act include authorizing the minister to establish standards for education service and creating agreements between First Nations and school boards to help close the achievement gap for Indigenous students.
Additionally, the government will standardize specifying that students must be five years of age by Dec. 31 of the school year to join kindergarten so students entering school are ready to succeed.
The government also proposes revising the process for establishing a separate school district, and providing clear updated transportation eligibility criteria before the 2018-19 school year.
“The School Act has served Alberta’s students well for almost three decades, and I am confident that – as a result of these amendments – it will continue to do so for many years,” said David Eggen, Minister of Education, in a release Wednesday. “If proclaimed, these amendments would further align this legislation with our government’s education priorities, including increasing student success, ensuring equitable access to education and closing the gap between First Nations students and all other students in the province.”
If passed, the majority of the proposed School Act amendments would come into force immediately with others implemented at a later date.