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Curriculum review must provide assurances on standardized testing and a focus on literacy and math: Wildrose

The NDP government’s announcement of a major curriculum overhaul was short on details about getting back to basics in literacy and numeracy, just a few days after the Minister told a dedicated education advocate that “the matter of how mathematics is taught at individual schools [is] closed.”

“Consultation is of the utmost importance during this curriculum review process, including consultation with those who have been active critics of the current system,” Wildrose Shadow Education Minister Mark Smith said. “We need to take the time to get this review done right, and avoid change just for the sake of change.”

A new trend of declining test scores in Alberta highlights how important it is to return the focus to a strong foundation of reading, writing and math. It is also critical that Alberta maintains its system of public Provincial Achievement Tests, which was not mentioned in the announcement.

Wildrose urges the NDP government to ensure that parent groups receive appropriate representation in the face-to-face consultations in the fall, as parents know best when it comes to their children.

“We must provide students with an education that equips them with the skills they need to succeed beyond the classroom,” Smith said. “We have seen in other areas where this NDP government is fixated on implementing an 'NDP worldview. It is of the utmost importance that they keep ideology out of this review.”