Regina Douglas Park MLA Russ Marchuk became education minister on May 25, 2012. (Adam Hunter/CBC )

Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall made a small cabinet shuffle Friday in response to the departure of Education Minister Russ Marchuk.

Wall appointed Don Morgan as education minister. Morgan will continue to serve as minister of labour relations and workplace safety.

Marchuk, who has been minister for 15 months, told the premier earlier this week that he wanted to work on the education file, but not as a minister, Wall said. 

"He indicated that he just didn't feel he had the very significant resources that are required on such an important file as education."

During his time heading Education, Marchuk had responsibility for a few controversial files, including a plan to introduce more standardized testing to the school system.


Premier Brad Wall made his cabinet shuffle announcement Friday afternoon in Saskatoon. (Guillaume Dumont/CBC)

Wall praised Marchuk for his decision.

"He did something that's very rare in politics," Wall said. "He said he wanted to continue to play a role in education in terms of our government's efforts, but not the lead role. And you know, this is a rare thing."

Wall also appointed Rob Norris as minister of advanced education, taking over part of Morgan's portfolio. Norris had been dropped from cabinet in the last shuffle in 2012.