Tags: Building Strong Communities , Investing in Alberta’s Future , Supporting Families

Posted on Nov 12, 2019

UCP reveals plan to attack and defund Public and Catholic Education

Members of the United Conservative Party are calling for a “voucher system” that will strip public and Catholic schools districts of funding. This policy resolution, listed on page 51 of the upcoming UCP AGM agenda, comes just before Education Minister Adriana LaGrange plans to introduce her “Choice in Education Act.”

“Alberta parents should know this is a scheme to divert more public money into private schools and homeschooling,” said Sarah Hoffman, Official Opposition Critic for Education and MLA for Edmonton-Glenora. “It’s an American-style system that is failing students in the United States and will mean even more resources taken out of Alberta classrooms.

“The UCP passed a party resolution in 2018 calling for the removal of protections for LGBTQ2S+ students, and Minister LaGrange passed that into law with Bill H8,” said Hoffman. “This resolution is a call to set UCP policy, and Alberta parents have every reason to believe it will become law.”

LaGrange’s upcoming legislation comes as the UCP cuts hundreds of millions of dollars from public and Catholic schools to pay for their $4.7-billion corporate handout. LaGrange continues to dishonestly deny these cuts, even as educational assistants and teachers are being laid off. 

In Alberta’s largest school districts, classes are getting crowding, bus times are getting longer, and students with complex needs are losing their supports. A voucher system would make these problems even more severe.

“This minister has proven again and again that she can’t be taken at her word. But she does have an opportunity today to commit that she will not propose an education voucher system in Alberta, and will speak against it at her party’s convention,” Hoffman said.