Janet French Profile picture
Provincial affairs reporter with CBC Edmonton. #ableg #yeg Disorganized parent. Would rather be riding a bicycle. Tell me stuff: Janet.french@cbc.ca
5 May
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney has just announced all K-12 schools will move to online classes on Friday until May 25. #abed #ableg
Other restrictions Kenney has just announced:
- post-secondary classes must happen online
- workplaces with outbreaks must close for 10 days* (with exemptions for essential services)
- Retail stores must have max 10% fire code occupancy #ableg
-Outdoor social gatherings now limited to 5 people, down from 10 - also please limit this to one or two other households
-Places of worship limited to 15 people in person
-Funerals limited to 10 people in person #ableg
Read 16 tweets
3 May
NEW: Superintendent Robert Martin says Edmonton Catholic Schools will not pilot the draft K-6 curriculum.
“We believe that the conditions have not been met for a quality piloting process.”
Based on focus groups, surveys with 1,026 teachers, curriculum consultants, admins #abed
The division has prepared a 173-page report and recommendations for revisions to the draft K-6 curriculum. Board now discussing a motion to forward this to the education minister. Report near bottom of this page: ecsd.net/_ci/p/16691 #abed #ableg
The motion to send ECSD's analysis of the draft curriculum to Education Minister Adriana LaGrange, along with recommendations for improvement, passes unanimously. #ableg #abed
Read 6 tweets
6 Apr
A University of Calgary plagiarism expert says Alberta's whole draft K-6 curriculum should be reviewed by government after she found several instances of uncredited material within the documents. #abed #ableg
"This was not accidental plagiarism," Prof. Sarah Elaine Eaton said. "There's too much of it in this curriculum ... The people developing this curriculum should have known better." #ableg #abed
Here's Eaton's blog post where she shows her analysis of three curriculum passages and their original sources:
#abed #ableg
Read 5 tweets
2 Apr
By request, here are some tweets and sources about international test results and curriculum.
In their curriculum press release earlier this week, the government included Alberta's ranking over time in two international tests called TIMSS and PIRLS. #abed alberta.ca/release.cfm?xI…
The Alberta gov't press release doesn't explain why they're including these international rankings -- perhaps they are insinuating there is a link between curriculum, the old ministerial order on student learning, and these rankings. #ableg #abed
That's a bit tricky because in AB's current curriculum, different subjects were written (and updated) at different times. The controversial math one is from 2007, with 2016 updates by the former NDP in response to parent pushback education.alberta.ca/media/3115252/… #ableg #abed
Read 21 tweets
31 Mar
Some folks had observed yesterday that one of the outcomes in the Alberta draft curriculum had changed between the documents' release on Monday morning and the version online by Tuesday. #ableg #abed I asked the minister's office about this...
Justin Marshall, press secretary to Education Minister Adriana LaGrange, said: "The unclear wording on the website was brought to our attention recently. This was obviously an oversight and we immediately directed the wording to be updated for clarity...." (1/2) #abed #ableg
(2/2) Marshall continues: "Diversity is our strength and Alberta’s draft K-6 curriculum reflects every Albertan across this province." He then included a quote from the co-chair of Alberta’s Anti-Racism Advisory Council, in support of diversity reflected in the draft docs. #ableg
Read 4 tweets
30 Mar
Premier Jason Kenney and Education Minister Adriana LaGrange are doing a Facebook Live right now on the new K-6 draft curriculum facebook.com/kenneyjasont/v… #abed #ableg
Kenney is speaking about how transparent the UCP government has been in its curriculum development.

I have asked three times for the names of political and Alberta Education staff who are working on the curriculum.

They will not release those names. #ableg #abed
Kenney is now saying that some people want to teach a "distorted" version of Alberta and Canadian history that's too negative. This draft curriculum takes a more "balanced" approach to cultivate a sense of gratitude and pride. #ableg #abed
Read 16 tweets
29 Mar
Who wants to look at drafts of the K-6 curriculum, as crafted under Alberta's UCP government? Voila: new.learnalberta.ca #abed #ableg
Here's a quick first peek at what the K-6 curriculum has in store. We will add more detail and reaction here throughout the day.
#abed #ableg
TL;DR: Six- and seven-year olds will be expected to learn about ancient Rome and ancient Greece, Socrates, Plato and Aristotle, Judaism, Christianity, Islam, The Middle Ages, Anglo-Saxon England, The Silk Road, feudalism, the Magna Carta, Genghis Khan, and managing their money.
Read 4 tweets
29 Mar
Cree Elder who reviewed Alberta’s new K-6 curriculum says she can’t endorse it - scoop by ⁦@TomVernonGlobal#abed #ableg globalnews.ca/news/7722850/c…
“In Grade 5 students will begin to learn about the creation, mandate and impacts of residential schools on children, and the banning of First Nations, Metis and Inuit languages and ceremonies by the Canadian government.”

Grade 5. #ableg #abed
Truth and reconciliation calls to action, 62 I) trc.ca/assets/pdf/Cal… #abed #ableg Image
Read 13 tweets
27 Mar
The Alberta government has until Wednesday to reach a deal with the federal government or risk losing $148 million in federal funds for job retraining. #ableg #cdnpoli cbc.ca/news/canada/ed…
The provincial government wants to run a program called Alberta Jobs Now, worth almost $200 million. The issue is, they want to wait until it’s less pandemic-y, and more of the economy is functioning. Most of the $ for the program would come from a $185M federal boost. #ableg
The federal government provided $ under a workforce development agreement back in November. They say, the province has to use 80 per cent of that money by the end of the fiscal year - so, Wednesday. Didn’t use it? Send it back please, say the feds. #ableg
Read 7 tweets
5 Dec 20
A few noteworthy things came out of a legislative committee meeting today.

First, we learned Alberta’s chief electoral officer asked the gov’t for a four-month extension for a complex investigation during the pandemic. The government said no. #ableg

Elections AB won’t say what the case is the timelines suggest it could be the investigation into the UCP leadership race. The office has handed out more than $200,000 in fines connected with election financing irregularities in the 2017 race. cbc.ca/news/canada/ca…
Several people have appealed those fines and findings to the court.

You may also recall leaked documents suggested Jason Kenney and Jeff Callaway’s leadership campaigns shared strategy and information cbc.ca/news/canada/ed…

And the RCMP are investigating. #ableg
Read 13 tweets
3 Dec 20
The legislature has been trucking to try and get the 15 bills introduced this sitting passed so they can break for the holidays. Today was supposed to be the last day but -- they didn't quite make it. So MLAs will be back in the dome next week. #ableg
Bill 46, which proposes some contentious changes to access of electronic health records (among other things) did just clear second reading. cbc.ca/news/canada/ed… #ableg
The NDP has been blunt they intend to introduce numerous amendments to Bill 47, which seeks to make changes to workers compensation eligibility and occupational health and safety rules. cbc.ca/news/canada/ed… #ableg
Read 12 tweets
28 Nov 20
Almost seven months ago, the federal Liberal government committed $3 billion to top up the wages of frontline workers during the pandemic. Provinces had to match a third of the funding to claim most of the money. And Alberta is the odd one out. #ableg cbc.ca/news/canada/ed…
The federal NDP obtained federal government data showing how much provinces had claimed from the feds' Essential Workers program as of the end of September. Sic provinces had claimed 100 per cent. Every province and territory had claimed at least half - except Alberta. #ableg
As of Sept. 28, Alberta had claimed three per cent of the federal funding, and according to the finance minister's comments in the legislature, it was all no strings attached. Exactly how much Alberta has received to date is unclear. #ableg
Read 12 tweets
20 Nov 20
Today I spoke with one of the teachers previously serving on the curriculum working group for health and wellness. She says disbanding and replacing the groups so rapidly is a mistake by the Alberta government. #ableg #abed
Teacher @JodiKuriger explained how the curriculum working groups would meet four times a year, for three intense days at a time. They were tasked with going through educational literature reviews, and studying curriculum from other jurisdictions. #abed #ableg
She said the groups didn’t review documents handed to them - they wrote some of the outcomes in the curriculum documents. And all of those outcomes had to be backed up with references to relevant research to explain their importance. #abed #ableg
Read 8 tweets
19 Nov 20
New: the education minister will be moving some contentious curriculum review meetings with teachers online -- not in person, in Edmonton, as originally planned cbc.ca/news/canada/ed… #ableg #abed
LaGrange's press secretary says schools and school boards now have until Friday (tomorrow) to appoint teachers to the new curriculum working groups. Initial deadline was Tuesday (they had seven days to provide names, now it's 10). #ableg #abed
The newly online meetings have also been nudged one week later to Dec. 3 and 4. Were going to be Nov. 25 and 26. #ableg #abed
Read 4 tweets
19 Nov 20
New: The Alberta government has changed provincial policing standards to ban "carding," or, street checks, which disproportionately target visible minorities. #ableg
From a gov't news release: "The new rules state that officers can collect personal information from members of the public only in specific circumstances, such as asking about a crime that has taken place." #ableg
(More news release): "These interactions will be voluntary, and officers must make that clear at the outset of the interaction that citizens have no obligation to provide their personal information or answer questions." #ableg
Read 5 tweets
18 Nov 20
On Tuesday, on his way into the house, the health minister said the low number of contact traces prompted by Alberta’s app was a problem of scale - that more people need to download it to spark more traces #ableg
cbc.ca/news/canada/ed… Image
Despite @CBCFletch ‘s report from software experts that the issue with the ABTraceTogether app is a universal issue with third-party apps on iOS (iPhones), Shandro insisted the Alberta app works. cbc.ca/news/canada/ca… #ableg Image
Shandro also said reports from a local software developer who tested whether two iphones next to each other would "see" each other when the AB app ran in the background have not been verified. #ableg Image
Read 4 tweets
17 Nov 20
#abed news: The Alberta government is disbanding a group of 358 teachers, academics, Indigenous and francophone experts who were reviewing the new K-12 curriculum and rapidly assembling new groups of teachers to do the work: cbc.ca/news/canada/ed… #ableg
This comes in the wake of some of the government's hand-picked curriculum advisers making controversial suggestions that experts say would put Alberta decades behind other jurisdictions #ableg #abed cbc.ca/news/canada/ed…
The former curriculum working groups were originally appointed by the former NDP government in 2016. At one point, there were more than 400 people in the groups. They had expenses reimbursed but were otherwise volunteering their time to look at specific subjects. #ableg #abed
Read 16 tweets
24 Oct 20
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney is addressing the UCP AGM now. #ableg He says he's here to give a message of hope at a difficult time.
So far he's touched on the story of David Thompson, the first European to see the Rocky Mountains, the role of "personal responsibility" in Alberta's management of the pandemic, the Northern Lights awards for community contributions and the Alberta economic recovery plan #ableg
Sub-message to Joe Biden here, saying any American administration will have to answer to the thousands of people employed in the Keystone XL pipeline project. cbc.ca/news/canada/ca… Alberta invested $1.5B in it #ableg
Read 55 tweets
24 Oct 20
Federal conservative leader and Opposition leader Erin O'Toole will now address the UCP AGM. #ableg #cdnpoli
He's standing outside in Ottawa and the sun is shining and there is no snow and there are still leaves on trees. Grrr.
"Just another reason to hate Ottawa," O'Toole quips. #ableg
O'Toole said one of his first jobs was as a pipeline inspector with TransCanada. Alberta needs to be back in the driver's seat as we recover from the pandemic and economic downturn, he said. #ableg
Read 26 tweets
24 Oct 20
Happy Saturday. I'll be following the second weekend of the United Conservative Party's AGM today. On the agenda, addresses from Leslyn Lewis, Erin O'Toole, and Premier Jason Kenney. #ableg
There will also be a panel with Rona Ambrose, Adriana LaGrange, Rebecca Schulz and Tracy Allard on women leading during a crisis. #ableg
The day wraps up with a virtual bear pit session with Jason Kenney. There are also breakout sessions. #ableg
Read 24 tweets
23 Oct 20
Education Minister Adriana LaGrange says some controversial curriculum proposals 'aren't even realistic'
cbc.ca/news/canada/ed… #ableg #abed
Premier Jason Kenney also yesterday defended social studies consultant Chris Champion. He repeated the education ministers assurances residential schools will be taught in elementary school. #ableg #abed
Premier Kenney repeated his previous claims there was no Canadian history, law or parliamentary democracy in the NDP’s curriculum “framework.” This is incorrect. #ableg #abed
Read 5 tweets