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UCP accuse NDP of opposing choice in education

NDP refute claims
FILE - UPC candidates release an open letter to parents who choose Catholic education. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

The UCP says that Red Deer-North NDP candidate Jaelene Tweedle has wanted to defund choice when it comes to education in Alberta.

“Red Deer-North candidate Jaelene Tweedle shared in 2021 she would rather see ‘one’ education system instead of more choice in education,” said UCP candidates in an open letter to parents who choose Catholic education.

In reference to charter schools, Tweedle had tweeted, “I’d much rather see one world-class, high-quality system that meets and prioritizes the needs of ALL students. The removal of the cap for the number of Charters that may exist just further erodes the quality of Public Education, and further divides communities, in my opinion.”

She said in another tweet that charter schools are governed by a board and only its members can vote to determine who sits on that board. But public schools are governed by public boards who are elected locally by the public.

“To me, any school that is receiving public funding for their schools, should be governed by a body that is elected by the public,” Tweedle tweeted.


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The letter, signed by Red Deer-North UCP candidate Adriana LaGrange, Calgary-Shaw UPC candidate Rebecca Schulz, and Peace River UCP candidate Dan Williams, says two other NDP candidates have advocated for eliminating the Catholic education system which is constitutionally protected.

Tweedle refuted the UCP’s claims.

“Once again Danielle Smith and the UCP are lying. Rachel Notley and the Alberta NDP will fund every student enrolled in Alberta schools - public, Catholic, charter, Francophone, and independent,” Tweedle said in a statement.


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The UCP candidates said in 2020 their party enshrined the right for parents to choose the education their children receive, while the NDP oppose it at every step.

“The NDP has always been clear that they want to defund independent schools, and that they disagree with our UCP government’s support for charter schools. But these comments make it clear that Catholic education is also not safe under the NDP.”

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Susan Zielinski

About the Author: Susan Zielinski

Susan has been with the Red Deer Advocate since 2001. Her reporting has focused on education, social and health issues.
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