Future Ready

Alberta's new, integrated approach to education, skills and training – from kindergarten to career.

Future Ready is a Government of Alberta initiative focused on ensuring that every Albertan has the skills they need to succeed in a changing economy. From a comprehensive curriculum renewal to new investment in apprenticeship and workforce training, Future Ready programs are designed to ensure that all Albertans can find rewarding work – today and tomorrow.

About Future Ready

Future Ready takes a co-ordinated approach to education and training, from kindergarten through to the job market. Our vision is to ensure that every Albertan has the skills they need to secure rewarding careers in the new Alberta.

Because good jobs begin with good education.

Future Ready programs cover a wide range of policies and initiatives across the education and training spectrum, including:

  • a comprehensive review and renewal of kindergarten to Grade 12 curriculum
  • new investments in adult education and skills training
  • opening new schools and modernizing existing ones
  • providing more opportunities to help apprentices succeed
  • working with the private sector to ensure graduates have the skills that companies need
  • maintaining current spending levels in education

Curriculum development

Education is the cornerstone of a healthy economy. That’s why Alberta Education is working to develop a new provincial curriculum that will prepare students for careers in a diversified Alberta.

While our students continue to achieve at world-class levels, the current kindergarten to Grade 12 curriculum ranges from eight to 30 years old. It requires a comprehensive review and renewal to be brought up to date.

The review, which commenced in September 2016, will take place in stages. Kindergarten to Grade 4 is scheduled for completion by the end of 2018. Grades 5 to 8 will be developed in 2019 and high school subjects will be developed in phases from 2020 to 2022.

Parents, teachers and students will have opportunities to contribute ideas on what will be taught in Alberta classrooms in the years ahead.

Learn more about the curriculum review

News: Parents’ views on curriculum will help make kids Future Ready (Oct 18, 2016)

Post-secondary tuition freeze

The Government of Alberta is committed to ensuring access to quality, affordable adult education in the province. In June 2015, post-secondary funding cuts were rolled back and tuition was frozen for 2 years.

Now, as part of the Future Ready program, we are extending the tuition freeze to the end of the 2017-18 academic year.

This will ensure that post-secondary education is affordable and accessible for all Albertans, and provide a stable educational environment while the government consults with Albertans on a new tuition and fee model that best serves students, families, institutions and taxpayers.

The public consultation on the tuition and fees review was concluded on December 7, 2016. Your feedback is important to us and we thank you for your participation.

Currently, the government is analyzing feedback to help inform the next stage of stakeholder discussions. This will ultimately lead to future directions on tuition and fees for learners in Alberta.

Please visit the tuition review website regularly for updates about progress on this review.

News: Province keeps tuition affordable for Alberta students (Oct 19, 2016)

Summer Temporary Employment Program (STEP)

For students in high school and university, gaining work experience is a critical aspect of preparing for success after graduation.

The Summer Temporary Employment Program (STEP) provides funding for eligible Alberta employers to hire summer students, through a standardized wage subsidy of $7-per-hour.

The program helps young Albertans develop important job skills on the road to rewarding careers, while also helping businesses hire temporary staff between May and August.

The program, which was restored by the government in 2015, approved funding for up to 3,000 students in the summer of 2016. The Alberta Jobs Plan has $10 million budgeted for STEP each year, starting in 2016-17.

Employers interested in hiring a student for 2017 are encouraged to apply as soon as possible. Applications must be received by Feb 24, 2017.

Apply for the Summer Temporary Employment Program (STEP)

News: STEP 2017 creates jobs for Alberta's students (Jan 20, 2017)

News: STEP helps students become "Future Ready" (Oct 20, 2016)

Apprentice Training Award

Skilled trades play a vital role in Alberta’s economy. The Government of Alberta is committed to supporting our apprentices as they progress toward journeyperson certification.

The new Apprentice Training Award provides financial support to eligible apprentices in Alberta, with a total of $1.5 million budgeted to assist up to 1,500 unemployed apprentices during the 2016-17 academic year. Eligible Alberta apprentices will receive $1,000 in financial assistance to continue their technical training.

To be eligible for the award, apprentices must have completed their first period of technical training at a post-secondary institution or other training partner. They must be currently registered in a second, third or fourth period technical training program and not be currently working in their trade. Government will identify and contact apprentices who meet these criteria.

The Apprentice Training Award, part of the government’s commitment to ensuring Albertan students are prepared for success in a changing economy, will be distributed to eligible apprentices starting in January 2017.

Apprentice Training Award

Tradesecrets: Apprenticeship and skills training in Alberta

Student Aid Alberta

News: Province helps unemployed apprentices prepare for success (Oct 20, 2016)

Bridge-to-Teacher Certification

Alberta’s career and technology classes allow students to explore a variety of career options while still in school – providing educational opportunities that prepare them for success in a changing economy.

The Bridge-to-Teacher certification program ensures that students have expert guidance in career and technology classes such as trades, culinary arts and construction. Under the program, industry professionals are trained to teach these high-demand courses within their field of specialty.

The program, first offered in 2010, provides support for career professionals as they complete a teacher preparation program offered by participating Alberta institutions. To date, the Bridge-to-Teacher program has prepared teachers in ten trades:

  • auto mechanic
  • auto body
  • baking
  • carpentry
  • culinary
  • cosmetology
  • electrical
  • welding/fabrication
  • heavy equipment operation
  • plumbing and refrigeration

Bridge-to-Teacher Certification Program

News: Preparing industry professionals for the classroom (Oct 21, 2016)

School nutrition pilot program

Access to healthy meals in schools helps kids thrive – in and out of the classroom. When students eat well at school, they learn better, feel better, and have more energy for their active lives. Healthy eating at school also sets young people up for success later in life, by reducing risk of chronic disease and laying a solid foundation for good nutrition into adulthood.

The government’s school nutrition pilot program is part of a targeted plan toward improving and promoting healthy eating at Alberta schools.

Using funds from Alberta Education’s existing budget, the pilot program involves identifying 14 participating school authorities, based on socioeconomic status data from Statistics Canada, which will be granted $250,000 each to establish or enhance nutrition programs in one school of the authority’s choice.

Results of the pilot will help inform a broader, province-wide school nutrition program in 2017-18.

Alberta nutrition guidelines for children and youth

News: School nutrition pilot helps students get “Future Ready” (Nov 14, 2016)

Early learning and child care centres

Alberta’s new Early Learning and Child Care (ELCC) Centres represent a new approach to providing families with better access to high-quality, affordable child care.

Starting early in 2017, 18 ELCC Centres will provide child care services for a maximum of $25 per day. The new centres will improve flexibility by providing child care services for parents who work part-time or on shifts that are outside typical day care hours (7 a.m. to 6 p.m.) and by offering care in accessible settings such as hospitals and other public buildings. The centres will also offer supports for children with diverse needs.

The 18 ELCC Centres, which will receive $500,000 operating grants, will create up to 1,000 new child care spaces and up to 230 new jobs for child care staff.

Non-profit licensed child care programs and those participating in the licensing process are invited to apply by filling out an expression of interest to become one of the 18 sites. This application outlines all the steps and criteria necessary to be considered.

Exact locations will be announced early 2017.

If you have additional questions about Alberta’s new Early Learning and Child Care (ELCC) Centres, please contact: HS.Childcare@gov.ab.ca

Early Learning and Child Care Centres

Expression of Interest Application (0.2 MB)

Early Learning and Child Care Centres Fact Sheet (0.2 MB)

News: Improving access to quality, affordable child care (Nov 15, 2016)

Awards for Indigenous students

The Indigenous Careers Award and Indigenous Graduate Award encourage First Nations, Métis and Inuit Albertans to pursue post-secondary and graduate studies.

Eligible post-secondary students may receive up to $4,000 per year and eligible graduate students may receive up to $15,000.

Post-secondary indigenous students must be enrolled in a high-demand career program stream, including:

  • Business
  • Education
  • Health Sciences
  • Physical, Natural & Applied Sciences
  • Social Sciences
  • Technologist Programs

Graduate students must be enrolled in a master’s or doctoral degree program approved by the Minister of Advanced Education at one of the following post-secondary schools:

  • Athabasca University
  • Concordia University of Edmonton
  • University of Alberta
  • University of Calgary
  • University of Lethbridge

Students can contact their Student Awards Office or visit their post-secondary institution’s website for application and deadline information.

Indigenous Careers Award

Indigenous Graduate Award

Student Aid Alberta

News: Awards support Indigenous students’ studies (Nov 15, 2016)

Community Adult Learning Program

Improving literacy skills contributes to better employment prospects and a higher quality of life for Albertans. As part of the Future Ready initiative, the government provides support to foundational learning projects through the Community Adult Learning Program (CALP).

The CALP provides approximately $15 million in funding to 130 non-profit and other organizations, helping learning and literacy services reach 600 communities across the province. Through CALP, the government is helping to ensure that Albertans have the skills and training they need to succeed in a changing economy.

In July 2016 the government released new guidelines to refocus the CALP on literacy and foundational learning, which includes adult literacy, numeracy, English language learning, basic computer skills, foundational life skills and family literacy.

Adult literacy and learning programs

Community adult learning councils

News: Albertans benefiting from adult learning supports (Nov 17, 2016)