Alberta Government announces a new curriculum for the 2021-22 year

Recent BLM protests might have seen an effect as education minister moves to no longer have political bias in school learning

Alberta Education Minister Adriana LaGrange. GOA

A new Alberta education curriculum will be field-tested in kindergarten to grade four classrooms in the 2021-2022 school year.

In a press conference on Thursday, Alberta Education Minister Adriana LaGrange announces that a ministerial order, first drafted back in January of this year will be implemented in the classrooms across Alberta for the 2021-22 school year.

This ministerial order, which is currently in effect as of Aug 6, would replace the old 2013 ministerial order by education minister at the time, Jeff Johnson.

LaGrange hopes to field test this pilot program in Kindergarten to Grade 4 classrooms in the fall of 2021-22. Expanding the pilot program to Grades 7 to 10 in September of 2022.

She also said that all elementary students can expect to be learning from the new kindergarten to grade six curriculum also in the fall of 2022.

“Albertans have long awaited a curriculum that focuses on the fundamentals of literacy, numeracy in core knowledge, and I’m pleased to say that our government is delivering on that expectation,” LaGrange said.

What’s included in the ministerial order

LaGrange’s ministerial order centers on shifting student learning away from constructivist learning and focus on literacy, numeracy, and cultural understandings of learning.

LaGrange said an emphasis is placed on preparing students for the working world and “inherent dignity of each individual.”

“Under this new ministerial order education in Alberta will promote the acquisition of skills, and the pursuit of knowledge with wisdom,” she said.

“While valuing equality of opportunity, parental responsibility, personal responsibility and excellence and respect for difference, and the inherent dignity of each individual.”

She made a key point in the press conference to ensure there would no longer be a political bias in schools.

“It will include a social studies curriculum that is taught without political bias, offering an objective understanding of Albertan, Canadian and world history, geography, and civic literacy,” she said.

In response to the BLM protests?

On June 19, a Black Lives Matter protest at the Calgary Board of Education headquarters which was in response to the level of biased learning, specifically in areas of social studies and history was held.

The protest involved kneeling at key intersections as the group marched towards the CBE headquarters.

The previous leader of the United Black People’s Allyship led the rally, outlining that racism is a foundation of learning in Alberta, which could no longer continue.

Kayl, one of the three Calgary BLM leaders at the protest said they wanted to bring light to the racism taught to students in schools today. 

“We were here today to try and change the curriculum so Black history is taught in schools,” Kayl said.

“The kids grow up not knowing what really happened, you know a lot of these people that are glorified were actually evil people.”

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