Alberta Accredited International Schools

An Alberta Accredited International School (AAIS) is an autonomous school that provides the Alberta curriculum to children and students outside of Alberta. The AAIS program works to

  • increase international recognition of Alberta’s high-quality education through its international schools
  • contribute to a supply of global talent to support the provincial economy
  • enable international schools to provide the Alberta curriculum and credentials to their local students
  • create sustainable and efficient opportunities for international schools to receive and maintain Alberta accreditation
  • collaborate with government ministries and non-governmental organizations to link accredited schools, their teachers, students and community leaders with opportunities to study and work in Alberta

Alberta Accredited International Schools must meet the accreditation requirements, as outlined in an agreement signed with Alberta Education, and are responsible for the costs associated with being part of the AAIS program. In addition, these schools must hire teachers who meet the Alberta certification requirements to teach the Alberta programs of study. The Alberta Principal/Alberta Program Administrator must ensure that the school follows the policies, standards and regulations of Alberta Education, as outlined in the Guide to Education and the Handbook for Alberta Accredited International Schools. Students must meet the requirements for graduation in order to obtain a credential from the Province of Alberta.

Alberta Accredited International Schools may charge tuition and other fees as required in order to fund operations, as they do not receive funding from the Province of Alberta.

For more information, visit Alberta Accredited International Schools or email [email protected].

Charter Schools

A charter school is an autonomous public school that provides innovative or enhanced education programs that improve student learning. Charter schools have characteristics that set them apart from other public schools in meeting the needs of a particular group of students through a specific program or teaching/learning style, approach or pedagogy while following provincial programs of study. The proposed method of educational delivery that improves student learning must be supported by research.

A person or group interested in establishing a charter school must submit a preliminary application to the Minister by June 1 and a final application by November 1 in the year preceding the projected school opening date. The Minister may issue a charter to establish a charter school in accordance with the regulations if the Minister is of the opinion that the program to be offered by the charter school is not already being offered by the board of the school division in which the charter school is located, with exceptions for a charter school focused on vocation-based education.

For information regarding the requirements for programming in charter schools for students with disabilities, see Accommodating Students with Exceptional Needs in Charter Schools.

For more information on charter schools, see the Charter Schools Handbook or contact Field Services.

Heritage Language Schools

A heritage language school is a type of accredited private school that offers approved or authorized language and culture courses outside regular school hours to students who receive their education program at another school authority. Although a heritage language school may also offer community language instruction, only the approved/authorized language and culture course series falls within the purview of Alberta Education.

As with other accredited private schools, heritage language schools must meet the requirements of section 29(2) of the Education Act and the requirements in the Private Schools Regulation. They also may employ a competent individual to teach a language or culture under the supervision of a teacher who holds a certificate of qualification as a teacher issued under the Education Act (section 198(2)).

A heritage language school must

  • offer either
    • an authorized provincial language and culture program of studies or
    • an approved locally developed language and culture course, and
    • ensure that the programs or courses offered and all instructional materials promote understanding and respect for others, honour and respect the common values and beliefs of Albertans, and reflect the diverse nature and heritage of society in Alberta (section 16 of the Education Act)

A heritage language school may be funded or non-funded. If funded, a person who holds an Alberta teaching certificate must be designated as the principal.

Heritage language schools will use PASIprep directly or their local student information system (SIS) that is integrated with PASI to submit information regarding courses completed.

Private Schools

Education Act, Sections 28.1, 29, 30
Private Schools Regulation

Private (independent) schools are recognized as being important in providing parents and students with choice in education. A person responsible for the operation of a private school shall ensure students enrolled in the private school are provided with an education program consistent with the requirements set out in the Act and the regulations.

A private school provides an educational alternative for parents who wish to have their children taught in accordance with a particular focus. Private schools may be based on religious beliefs, athletics, academics or a particular philosophy of learning.

Funded private schools are operated by a society under the Societies Act or a non-profit company registered under Part 9 of the Companies Act. Funded private schools are governed by the Board of Directors of the society or company.

Private schools may charge tuition and other fees as required. In addition, private schools can refuse to enrol students.

For information regarding the requirements for programming in accredited-funded private schools for students with disabilities, see Requirements for Special Education in Accredited-Funded Private Schools.

For more information, see Private Schools on Alberta.ca.