HALIFAX: The province will dissolve the seven elected regional school boards in the province.
The government says the changes to the education system will provide more support for students and give communities more input.
“Our singular focus is on improving student success,” said Zach Churchill, Minister of Education and Early Childhood Development.
Starting today, government committed to a review of the education administrative system and will act on the recommendations of Dr. Avis Glaze, a world-renowned education consultant, who assessed Nova Scotia’s system.
“This is a moment where we need to press forward together with a focus on those who need us most – our students,” said Churchill. “We have great people working in the system who are completely committed and dedicated to our kids. It’s our system that’s fractured.”
Dr. Glaze’s report, “Raise the Bar: A Coherent and Responsive Education Administrative System for Nova Scotia,” contains 22 recommendations.
“I accept the spirit and intent of the recommendations in this report,” said Churchill.
The province wants to unify the system by dissolving the seven elected regional school boards and create one provincial advisory council. The structure of the Conseil scolaire acadien provincial will not change.
A portion of the money saved will go to enhance the role and influence of school advisory councils for all schools (or families of schools) in the province to strengthen the local voice in schools.
They also intend to change the name of superintendents to regional executive directors and enhance their role to focus on student achievement, reporting directly to the deputy minister of Education and Early Childhood Development. Principals and vice-principals will be moved from the Nova Scotia Teachers Union, while protecting salaries, pensions and benefits.
Government also wants to move teaching support specialists (literacy leads, math mentors) out of regional education offices and into classrooms four days a week, with the fifth day dedicated to planning and preparation.
And finally, they will create an independent Provincial College of Educators.
The full list of government’s initial changes and a copy of Dr. Glaze’s report is on-line at: ednet.ns.ca/adminreview.
“I thank Dr. Glaze for her incredibly thoughtful report,” said Churchill. “She has challenged us to do better for our kids and I accept that challenge. Our kids deserve the best education we can give them and, as Dr. Glaze rightfully points out, our children cannot wait.”
Government will now work with partners in the education system to help implement the recommendations.