A new Alberta group is hoping to advocate for the best possible education for K-12 students. That is according to Jeff Park, the Executive Director of the Alberta Parents’ Union. He says parents were not consulted on decisions made by the province or school boards regarding choices in education that would impact their kids including the controversial K-6 pilot curriculum.
“Parents haven’t had enough of a look at it. You know, we haven’t had much of a chance to learn about the curriculum, to have it explained to us. The last time there was a major change to curriculum in Alberta with the introduction of discovery learning type approaches, we heard from parents first that this wasn’t working. Then we saw that test score drop. We can’t really know until it hits those kitchen tables and until parents truly get to have their input into it how that’s going to look. It is starting to look like a bit of a repeat of that experience to me from my end.”
Park will be hosting an event in Lethbridge on Thursday night at the Servus Sports Centre at 6:30pm for parents to network and ask questions.
The Alberta government recently laid out a K-6 pilot draft curriculum that will begin with Science, French First Language and Literature, and French Immersion Language Arts and Literature. These three updated drafts are expected to be piloted out to schools in September.
The piloting experience will include:
- supporting teachers with professional learning opportunities
- information and tools to work with the updated subjects in classrooms
- collecting feedback from teachers piloting the draft curriculums
By June 6, schools will make the decision to participate in classroom piloting, including how many teachers are involved, the subjects and grade levels they will pilot.
A release from the Alberta government says Albertans will also be able to provide feedback on the updated draft K–6 subjects. In spring 2023, the feedback from classroom piloting and Albertans will inform final updates to the three curriculums prior to provincewide implementation during the 2023-24 school year.
The release from the province went on to say the draft K–6 Science, French First Language and Literature, and French Immersion Language Arts and Literature curriculums were updated by considering all feedback from classroom piloting and engagement activities between March 2021 and March 2022. The content was also aligned with top-performing jurisdictions within Canada and internationally, as well as those jurisdictions with knowledge-rich curriculums.
- Revisions and additions to the draft K–6 Science content to integrate scientific methods and hands-on activities, emphasize connections to nature and address digital literacy and ethics.
- Enhancements to the draft K–6 French First Language and Literature content will support the development of francophone identity through inclusion of francophone perspectives and cultures.
- Enhancements to the draft K–6 French Immersion Language Arts and Literature curriculum to strengthen francophone perspectives and culture, provide logical learning progressions, develop effective and meaningful communication, and support critical thinking and language skills.
- Changes across the three K–6 subjects to address instances of concern with content load, age appropriateness, wording clarity and First Nations, Métis and Inuit content.