Northwest Territories to Use BC’s School Curriculum, Not Alberta’s | The Canadian News

The Northwest Territories government confirmed Thursday that it will use the JK-12 school curriculum from British Columbia.

Until this decision, NWT had been using the Alberta curriculum. In fact, the Opposition NDP said NWT used the Alberta curriculum in schools for more than 40 years.

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In March, the NDP said NWT was preparing to drop the Alberta curriculum due to “the widely criticized rewrite of Jason Kenney’s UCP government.”

At the time, the NWT said no decisions had been made about the curriculum.

In a press release Thursday, the NWT government said it decided to partner with BC after “extensive research, analysis and more than 40 consultation and engagement sessions with indigenous governments, educational bodies, the Association of Teachers of the Territories of the Northwest (NWTTA) and educators. “

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The territory’s education department began researching the Canadian Western Provinces curriculum in 2019 “to determine which one is most aligned with NWT’s 34 long-time educational priorities.”

In the press release, the government described BC’s curriculum as “modern, student-centered” and “competency-based”.


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He went on to say: “The BC curriculum was clearly the most aligned with the NWT, as it is one of the first in Canada to focus on competency-based learning; modernizes to meet the needs of students in an ever-changing world; incorporates financial education; begins to provide professional education in the early grades; and offers an applied design, skills, and technology curriculum that draws on students’ natural curiosity, inventiveness, and creativity. “

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The NWT press release also noted that the British Columbia curriculum “crucially” integrates “Indigenous worldviews, knowledge and perspectives … in a meaningful and intentional way.”

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“British Columbia’s redesigned curriculum aims to personalize learning, making it more flexible and student-centered,” said RJ Simpson, NWT minister of education. “With an emphasis on indigenous knowledge and a focus on literacy and numeracy skills, I am confident that this curriculum will benefit all NWT JK-12 students.”


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“This decision by the Northwest Territories should be a wake-up call for the PCU,” NDP education critic Sarah Hoffman said Thursday. “Now they’ve messed up Alberta’s draft K-6 curriculum so badly that other jurisdictions are proactively changing just to protect their students.

“This is an embarrassing blow to Alberta’s reputation. Adriana LaGrange should explain: If this curriculum is not good enough for the students of the Northwest Territories, why should anyone believe that it is good enough for the children of Alberta?

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In a statement, the Alberta government said it is regrettable that NWT made its decision before the draft of Alberta’s K-6 curriculum was finalized.

“We understand your decision to act quickly and partner with a province that has a finalized and implemented K-12 curriculum that is currently taught in classrooms, such as British Columbia. By contrast, Alberta is still in the early stages of the K-12 curriculum renewal process, ”explained Alberta Education Spokesperson Nicole Sparrow.

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“We understand that NWT is making significant changes to its educational system as part of its efforts to improve student outcomes. After years of declining results here in Alberta, we are doing the exact same thing through our curriculum renewal process.

“While we were glad to partner with NWT in the past, the Alberta government is focused on ensuring Alberta students can learn early about a modern curriculum that sets them up for success. We will continue to listen to all Albertans, including those interested in education and indigenous communities, to ensure we have the best possible curriculum for our students once the content is finalized and implemented.

“Alberta Education is working closely with First Nations and Metis organizations to ensure their unique perspectives are heard and that their feedback is reflected in the draft curriculum. To support this important work, grants have been awarded to Blackfoot Confederacy, Confederacy of Treaty Six, Metis Settlements General Council, Stoney Nakoda – Tsuut’ina Tribal Council and Tribal Chiefs Ventures Inc., ”he said.

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NWT will implement the new curriculum in phases over several years, the government said. Indigenous governments, NWTTA, and educational agencies will assist with teacher training and adaptation of classroom resources and assessments.


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