New Brunswick

Education commission makes familiar recommendations

Familiar themes and ideas emerge in a two-person committee's recommendations on what New Brunswick should strive to achieve in public education over the next 10 years.

Premier Brian Gallant promised a 10-year education plan during the 2014 provincial election campaign

Gino LeBlanc and Karen Power announced their recommendations for the province's 10-year education plan. (CBC)

Familiar themes and ideas emerge in a two-person committee's recommendations on what New Brunswick should strive to achieve in public education over the next 10 years.

Commission member Karen Power, who is a former district superintendent in Moncton, said the report aims to provide "a thoughtful and sustainable roadmap" for decision-makers.

"I heard about inconsistent expectations, procedures and decisions, varying by provincial department and school," said Power. "The current governance structure creates a complicated role for superintendents who officially report to the [district education councils] but receive funding, resources and direction from the provincial government.

"With each election, provincial governments have made decisions and changed direction that affects student learning," she said. "I learned that the lack of continuity and evidences based decisions as a province is perceived as a critical risk by those in and outside the province."

Recommendations made for the anglophone school system include:

  • Sustain and implement a student-centred, evidence-based education plan, including using performance-based management strategies.
  • Define the roles and responsibilities of educators and define professional job expectations for teachers.
  • Improve high school programming and find equitable access to engaging options for students in small schools and vulnerable communities.
  • Develop a focus for middle school.
  • Establish instruction time for students in kindergarten through Grade 2 that is "comparable with other provinces.

"Many findings align with recommendations made to provincial governments during the past 25 years," states the report.

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