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Panel to oversee Alberta's school curriculum review: Kenney

Last Updated Aug 16, 2019 at 4:54 pm MDT

Premier Jason Kenney speaks at a press conference on education during the provincial election campaign. March 25th, 2019. (PHOTO: Tom Ross - 660 NEWS)

EDMONTON – The United Conservatives are making good on another campaign promise as they look to review the current school curriculum.

During a Q&A session on Facebook, Premier Jason Kenney addressed a question about when the review will take place.

While Kenney said the government doesn’t have a concrete date in place, but an expert panel is expected to begin work soon.

“The focus of this will be a curriculum that ensures that basic knowledge and skills and key competencies are taught to students that are well prepared for the future.”

In February, Kenney announced plans to review the curriculum despite a similar review already done by the NDP. The review led to a draft of a K-4 curriculum which was to be tested in some schools this fall.

Kenney said they need to address performance issues affecting many students.

“The huge decline in numeracy and math competency amongst our students; addressing the decline in reading proficiency.”

When the UCP announced they would review the curriculum it was met with sharp criticism from many including then Education Minister David Eggen.

Eggen said Kenney’s proposal was “a drive-by shooting on our curriculum and our kid’s education.”

READ MOREDebate erupts over Alberta’s education curriculum 

Those comments came after Kenney accused the NDP of its ideology and worldviews into the curriculum.

That’s something the Premier says he wants to change.

“Removing political agendas from, for example, the Social Studies curriculum that I believe were being smuggled into the curriculum by the NDP in a highly politicized way.”

Kenney said that Education Minister Adriana LaGrange will announce a panel to review the curriculum and offer consultations with parents, teachers and experts.

He says the review will be done differently than the NDP, with more transparency.

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When Kenney says he wants to remove political agendas, ideology and worldview, he is talking about the much needed changes the NDP were making to the curriculum to include Indigenous peoples and history, and to combat racism and discrimination embedded in the curricula. As he continues to dismantle human rights, this is a push to ensure our young people do not learn how to effectively work, live and play in a pluralistic society. This is embedding his political agenda, ideology and worldview. Dr. Valerie Pruegger

August 16, 2019 at 9:18 am