August 27, 2019
TEACHERS’ VOICES NEEDED IN CURRICULUM DEVELOPMENT, SAY GREENS
EDMONTON – The provincial government’s decision to arbitrarily scrap its Memorandum of Understanding on curriculum development with the Alberta Teachers Association (ATA) will have detrimental repercussions for students, say the Green Party of Alberta.
Cheryle Chagnon-Greyeyes, leader of the GPA and the party’s Candidate of Record in Calgary-Varsity, says the move is irresponsible and reflects a top-down approach to decision making, removing input and decision-making from those most affected by curriculum development. “Teachers are shut out from this vital process. Given the immense challenges this next generation will face, we need to develop people who critically think about the word around them. By eradicating the MOU, the UCP intend to rely solely on administrators removed from the classroom.”
The government have announced a new advisory panel with no active teachers. Its Chair, a former Edmonton School Boards Supervisor, was last in the classroom as a teacher decades ago.
“We question the value and validity of the panel. The decision to ditch the MOU was an act of ideology with no place in our education system. We want students that are exposed to a well-rounded curriculum that is set in the 21st century,” says Chagnon-Greyeyes. “Teachers are key to the whole process of curriculum development because they see the needs of students on a day-to-day basis. To abandon an agreement that was working is reckless and reflects a far deeper concern.”
The Greens are worried that key perspectives that do not reflect the UCP worldview will be lost in the shuffle. “The previous process involved Indigenous representatives, francophone teachers, and involved a more diverse sampling of our population. It promised to produce a vibrant curriculum that would enable students to immerse themselves in current realities and issues. Now, it could be a step backwards, with a monotone and colonial default towards curriculum development,“ says Chagnon-Greyeyes.
The Green Party of Alberta would respect the vast pool of diversity and talent that exists among the province’s teachers by placing them at the heart of curriculum development. “Our kids deserve nothing less than a curriculum that promotes a thirst for life-long learning, exposure to our diverse realities, and values them as people,” says Chagnon-Greyeyes.
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For more information, please contact:
Leader of the Green Party of Alberta