Unification of Public And Separate School Jurisdictions — Former Minister of Education Speaks Out

Unification of Public And Separate School Jurisdictions — Former Minister of Education Speaks Out

New Website Promotes Constant Improvement of Public Education Across Alberta

A better IDEA: Inclusive, Diverse, Education for All

EDMONTON- Former Education Minister David King has launched a website to promote the constant improvement of public education across Alberta.  The initial focus is on unifying the province’s public and separate school boards.

“I invite Albertans to join me in a campaign about a better IDEA — Inclusive, Diverse, Education for All. From Milk River to Keg River, and from Lloydminster to Blairmore, it is time for a thoughtful conversation, involving every interested Albertan, about why we duplicate administration and services, and operate under-utilized schools, to preserve a denominational privilege that is out of keeping with current human rights practices and may no longer be relevant.”

“The recent provincial budget revealed serious on-going financial shortfalls for the provincial government.  In education, this raises questions about duplicating administration and infrastructure costs when the money could be re-directed to the classroom for better service to students or reduced costs to parents.  Imagine how much further school fees could have been reduced without the current cost of duplication.”

A successful campaign to promote unification of the two systems will quickly involve others, including education and civic organizations and concerned citizens.  The conversation will take many forms, from small house meetings to large gatherings, and may eventually lead to a province-wide referendum or similar outcome.  ourIDEA extends an open invitation to Albertans — join the conversation, ask for information, offer suggestions, involve your neighbours.

For ourIDEA.ca, the goal is to offer a focal point and a reliable resource base — of information, argument, and campaign practices to encourage and  support the conversation that should spread across the province.  Currently, this site has one active project:  the unification of Alberta’s two civil school systems — public and separate, along lines already adopted in Newfoundland and Labrador and in Quebec.  (In both provinces, denominationally established school systems have been drawn into non-denominational public school systems.)

From time to time, the website will take up other projects.  The constant focus will be — our Inclusive, Diverse Education for All.

ourIDEA promotes public school education in contrast to other means of education.  Our advocacy focuses on three areas of concern: the impact of education (especially public school education) on civil democratic society; improving the system; and, improving outcomes.