‘Government is being told loudly and clearly’: ATA calls for halt to K-6 draft curriculum

CALGARY — The Alberta Teachers’ Association (ATA) is asking the province to stop work on the draft curriculum until a rewrite and review can take place.

The ATA held a news conference on Thursday to outline its plan to halt the pilot and implementation of the draft curriculum.

The group is launching full-page ads in newspapers across the province starting Friday to call for a moratorium and to offer support to those school divisions that have decided not to participate in the pilot.

“Alberta’s students and teachers require an appropriate and workable curriculum. The government is being told loudly and clearly that this curriculum is unacceptable. We now need the government to announce a stop to their implementation plans and to spell out a new way forward,” said Jason Schilling, ATA president, in a release.

Schilling is also telling school administrators not to direct teachers to participate in the pilot.

“Teachers who believe this curriculum is unsound and potentially damaging to student learning have the professional responsibility and moral right to refuse to participate in voluntary piloting. The government and school boards must respect the decision of individual teachers to not participate in piloting.”

The ATA says teachers are prepared to draw on their extensive experience and expertise to help with the curriculum development process.

“We are committed to supporting the development of a high-quality curriculum, and the ATA is prepared to work constructively in partnership with the Government of Alberta toward that end. It is the only workable path forward. We just need to be invited,” said Schilling.

The K-6 draft curriculum has faced criticism from parents, teachers and Indigenous groups since it was released and several school divisions have voiced concerns over its redesign and the impacts of the pandemic on the learning needs of students.

Parents and the public can pledge their support and learn more about the moratorium HERE.

For more information on the draft K-6 curriculum, visit the Alberta.ca website

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