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Staggered start to new school year for some Red Deer Catholic schools

New curriculum in place
The new school year has begun at Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools. (Image from Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools)

Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools continued to provide schools with the option of staggering the start of classes over two days, and has begun implementing the new curriculum for many students.

The division said staggered starts began two years ago and has shown to provide benefits.

School communities were given the option to allow half of its student population to begin on the first day of school, and the other half the second day.

As it was optional, not all schools chose this route based on the preference of parent and staff responses.


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The division said it is also using a measured approach for the implementation of new curriculum this fall by considering the demands placed on and needs of teachers and students.

Kindergarten to Grade 3 teachers are implementing the new curriculums for Mathematics and English Language Arts and Literature. Kindergarten to Grade 6 are implementing the new Physical Education and Wellness curriculum.

All but Red Deer Catholic’s three high schools are implementing some level of mandatory curriculum implementation.

In addition to the mandatory implementation of subjects, some teachers are choosing to participate in the optional piloting of the next phase of the new curriculum: seven teachers are piloting English Language Arts and Literature in Grades 4 to 6; four teachers in Grades 4 to 5 Mathematics; four teachers in Grade 4 Science; three teachers in Grade 5 Science; and one teacher in Grade 6 French Immersion Language Arts.

“We believe strongly that classroom teachers are the instructional experts and implementing a plan to ensure this expertise is the strongest voice in our curriculum implementation. We will continue to focus on a measured collaborative approach that fosters innovation in our classrooms,” said Ryan Sawula, associate superintendent of curriculum, in a statement.


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The division said school leadership teams will continue to meet to collaborate on implementation plans and share strategies and best practices.

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