On June 26, leadership of Northland School Division provided clarity to the minister on the situation affecting schools in Conklin and Fort Chipewyan.
“I am concerned about the situation happening at Athabasca Delta Community School and Conklin Community School. While significant improvements have been made by the school division, high teacher turnover demonstrates that we still need to find solutions to the additional challenges facing the education system in these two communities.”
Northland School Division leadership and the minister discussed the need to work together to develop a comprehensive plan to address the ongoing challenges affecting the school division.
“We are looking at developing a long-term plan that will look at a variety of issues facing the school division, including infrastructure and staff housing. I look forward to engaging with the Government of Alberta to address the challenges we are facing.”
During the meeting, the minister expressed her desire to visit the affected communities and gain a first-hand account of the challenges facing these schools.
“We have already started the process to address the staffing concerns that have been raised. We have begun interviews to replace outgoing teachers, and I look forward to having the minister visit and see first-hand the excellent supports we have in place for our students.”
The minister reaffirmed the government’s commitment to supporting rural schools, and ensuring that Indigenous students, including the Mikisew Cree First Nation and the Métis people in the Conklin area, have a positive education experience.
“We need to ensure everyone plays a role in supporting this community. In addition to meeting with school leadership, my office has reached out to the mayor of the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo to schedule a meeting, and to the office of Minister O’Regan, federal Minister of Indigenous Services, to keep him informed.”