Elk Island Public Schools is at it again.
After removing a trustee under questionable circumstances, they're now refusing to hold a by-election to replace him!
Once again, a school board is defending leaving thousands of parents unrepresented by arguing that a by-election would cost too much.
In this case, "too much" is a cost of just $40,000, when said school board has millions in reserves and an annual budget of over $208 million.
We say “once again” because this is becoming an all-too-predictable pattern for school boards across Alberta.
Are education standards falling?
Is Canada falling behind other countries in key subjects?
Is Alberta falling behind other provinces?
Are children learning what previous generations were expected to know?
Can we see patterns in what kind of instruction improves understanding over time?
Can we tell if new reforms don't live up to their promise or even make things worse?
Who really runs your school board?
Elected trustees, or unelected school division bureaucrats?
Today's email is a bit technical, but we think it's really important that someone is paying attention to these details, and shows just how important our mission here at the Alberta Parents' Union is.
Thankfully, there are tonnes of parents like you helping us keep a close eye on what's coming up on school board meeting agendas.
And after some digging into a concern they brought to us, here's what we found out.
In the vast landscape of societal concerns, few issues are as universally important as the state of our education system.
The education system serves as the bedrock for shaping the minds that will lead our communities, drive our economies, and navigate the growing complexities of the future.
All too often, I encounter the sentiment that once a person's children have grown or have graduated, they no longer see the relevance in advocating for a better system.
In 1950, the United States Air Force had a problem.
Its airplanes were falling out of the sky way too often.
Despite it now being peacetime, far too many of the Air Force’s pilots were still dying - often, inexplicably, in training.
A team of researchers at Wright Air Force Base in Ohio discovered the cause.
Do you know what your kids are learning in school?
You might think you do - especially if you’ve looked at the official Alberta Curriculum, which is publicly available to all parents.
But did you know that the Alberta Curriculum is just a small part of what is taught in schools, and that the rest of what's taught doesn't have to be made available to parents at all?
The Minister of Education has been given his marching orders, and here's the details.
Let me explain: the Premier of Alberta, Danielle Smith, issues letters to each of her cabinet ministers outlining what she expects them to accomplish over the course of this electoral term.
These are called “mandate letters”.
We don’t think this is a coincidence...
A few weeks ago, we told you about Justin Trudeau’s threat to exceed his government's rightful jurisdiction and reach into the provincial jurisdiction of education.
Now, just a short while later, the Canadian Teachers’ Federation is calling for “federal leadership in education” in a letter addressed to... who else but Justin Trudeau.
At last month’s election, Nathan Ip, an Edmonton Public School Board Trustee, was elected as a Member of the Legislative Assembly of Alberta.
Now, EPSB is recommending not holding a by-election to fill the vacancy and, once again, the school board is trying to defend this decision by saying that a by-election would cost too much.
I say “once again” because this is fast becoming an all-too-predictable pattern for school boards across Alberta.
In February, we filled you in on three school boards that were planning on going three or more years without their full complement of democratically elected school board members.
The Legislative Assembly of Alberta has wrapped up, and the focus is now shifting to the election.
But I want to fill you in on something that we were keeping an eye on, that everyone else missed.
During the last session, NDP MLA Nicole Goehring introduced the following motion:
Be it resolved that the Legislative Assembly
(a) recognize that Alberta has been acknowledged for having a world-class public education system;
(b) oppose any efforts to create a privatized, two-tier education system; and
(c) oppose the use of vouchers for education, similar to those used in the United States.