From the Province of Alberta
Students returning to school for 2020-21 school year
Students will return to learning in classrooms across Alberta at the beginning of the new school year.
Schools will be ready to welcome students under scenario 1, which is near-normal daily operations with health measures.
Alberta’s government has developed a re-entry tool kit to prepare parents and students for what to expect in the new school year. The tool kit includes videos for students explaining some of the health measures, a guide for parents, frequently asked questions, school posters, a self-screening questionnaire in multiple languages, and links to health guidelines.
Under scenario 1, schools will implement a number of public health measures, which include frequent cleaning of surfaces, placing hand sanitizers at school entrances and classrooms, grouping students in cohorts, and planning the school day to allow for physical distancing, which could include staggering start times for classes, recesses and lunches. Additional public health measures may be established prior to September on the advice of the chief medical officer of health in consultation with the education system.
In addition, students, staff, parents and school visitors will be expected to use a self-screening questionnaire daily to determine whether they can enter the school.
Successful transition to summer school and child care
Alberta’s school re-entry plan works, and already has mitigated risks to students and teachers. Throughout the summer, the Calgary Catholic Separate School Division ran in-person summer school programming in accordance to the guidelines developed and issued by the province. These comprehensive guidelines have mitigated risk, resulting in no COVID-19 outbreaks among teachers or students participating in summer school.
Additionally, Alberta has seen a successful reopening of child care centres across the province. Children and staff have safely returned to these centres with no outbreaks occurring.
School authority funding
School authorities have returned to full funding levels as of July 1, and every school authority in Alberta is receiving a funding increase for the 2020-21 school year – roughly $120 million across the province. A list of funding for every school authority is available here.
In addition, the Minister of Education has approved the use of school board reserves, if needed, to help cover local COVID-19-related costs. The total amount of money sitting in school board reserves is $363 million.
Accelerated capital school funding
The province has also provided school boards an additional $250 million to support accelerated capital maintenance and renewal projects, as part of the more than $10 billion infrastructure spending announced in the Alberta Recovery Plan.
This funding supports infrastructure enhancements that will help in a COVID-19 learning environment. Seventy-nine school projects totalling $15 million are moving forward with this primary purpose, including upgrades for enhanced hygiene such as hands-free sinks, automatic flush toilets, touchless soap and paper towel dispensers, automatic doors and water bottle filling stations to replace water fountains.
New online Student Learning Hub
A new Student Learning Hub on new.learnalberta.ca is available for parents, students, and teachers to more easily access educational materials to support development of student literacy and numeracy, and provide health and wellness information.
The online hub is another resource to support Alberta’s school re-entry plan, with recognition that more online learning resources may be needed during the upcoming school year. Additional resources will also be added throughout the school year.
Expanding diploma exams
Diploma exams will be offered in every subject in the November and April exam sessions. Expanding the offerings of the diploma exams will support school authorities who are shifting high school programming to a four-semester system as part of their COVID-19 re-entry plan. This shift allows for better cohorting by limiting the number of classes a student is in during a term without affecting total learning time over the course of a year.
Personal protective equipment
Students and staff may wear a mask if they choose to. However, practices such as physical distancing, cohorting, frequent handwashing, staying home when sick and increased cleaning of surfaces will continue to be the priority public health measures.
COVID-19 cases at school
If a student or staff tests positive for COVID-19, a public health team will investigate to determine when symptoms developed and support the school to minimize transmission.
While each case will be addressed based on its unique circumstances, it is anticipated that in most cases only the group of students and staff who came in close contact will likely be required to stay home for 14 days, and not the entire school population.
Parents will be notified if a case of COVID-19 is confirmed at school and public health officials will contact those who were in close contact with that person.
Transitioning to scenario 2 or scenario 3
If there is an outbreak of COVID-19 in a community or school, health officials will work with Alberta Education and impacted school authorities to make any decision to potentially transition to partial in-class learning or at-home learning. Decisions will be based on multiple factors including the number of cases in a community or school and the risk of ongoing transmission.
The health guidance for scenario 2 has been updated to allow for a maximum of 20 students per class.
Premier Smith introduces Alberta Sovereignty Act to battle Ottawa in net-zero battle
“We are left with no choice but to create a shield to protect Albertans from Ottawa’s dangerous and unconstitutional electricity regulations”
Defending Alberta from brownouts, blackouts and soaring costs
Premier Danielle Smith has introduced an Alberta Sovereignty Within a United Canada Act resolution to protect Alberta from the federal government’s proposed net-zero electricity grid regulations to ensure Albertans have access to reliable and affordable power when and where they need it.
Alberta’s government will not put Albertans and their businesses at risk of freezing in the dark at -30 C due to the federal government’s proposed unaffordable, unreliable and unconstitutional Clean Electricity Regulations (CERs).
The federal government has been clear it is unwilling to align its electricity regulations with Alberta’s Emissions Reduction and Energy Development Plan as the province works to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. Instead, the federal government has continued to indicate it will move ahead with its plan to implement unrealistic requirements for a net-zero electricity grid by 2035, regardless of the costs and risks to Albertans.
To protect Albertans from future brownouts, blackouts and soaring costs, Alberta’s government has introduced the first Alberta Sovereignty within a United Canada Act resolution. This resolution asks the legislative assembly of Alberta for approval to take strong, effective action over the coming months and years to counteract the harms and risks to Albertans posed by the federal CERs.
“We have tried to work with Ottawa to align their emissions-reduction efforts with our provincial plan to achieve a carbon-neutral power grid by 2050. Unfortunately, after months of meetings, they continue to reject this opportunity and remain committed to an absurdly unrealistic and unattainable goal of a net-zero power grid by 2035. We are left with no choice but to create a shield to protect Albertans from Ottawa’s dangerous and unconstitutional electricity regulations. They may be willing to expose Albertans to high costs, blackouts and brownouts, but we are not, and we will continue to ensure Albertans are protected from these destructive and unconstitutional federal policies.”
The CERs propose unrealistic rules with Criminal Code violations to achieve net-zero electricity by 2035. Alberta’s grid needs more baseload power from natural gas, but these regulations have created uncertainty and are driving away investment. This threatens the reliability and economic well-being of Alberta’s homes and businesses.
Alberta does not have enough applications for new natural gas power plants to provide the substantial new generation of power the province needs, primarily due to the investor uncertainty caused by the federal government’s extreme policies.
“The courts are on our side, science and logic are on our side, the Constitution is on our side – electricity generation is the jurisdiction of the provinces, not the federal government. It is our responsibility to provide safe, reliable and affordable electricity to all Albertans without interference from Ottawa. This is what we are doing and will continue to do.”
“The federal regulations will hurt grid reliability for families and businesses while sending costs soaring. Everything we have seen from Ottawa suggests they simply don’t care how these rules will hurt Albertans. We will not put families at risk of rationing power during the coldest days of the year.”
If passed, the Alberta Sovereignty Within a United Canada Act resolution will help protect Alberta’s electricity grid and ensure that homes and businesses across the province can access reliable, affordable power for decades to come.
The resolution asks Alberta’s cabinet to order all provincial entities not to recognize the constitutional validity of, enforce, nor cooperate in the implementation of the CERs in any manner, to the extent legally permissible. This order would not apply to private companies or individuals. The resolution also asks Alberta’s government to work with the Alberta Electric System Operator, Alberta Utilities Commission and others to implement various reforms to Alberta’s electrical system to ensure grid affordability and reliability.
In addition, the resolution instructs the government to work with industry, regulators and other groups to study the feasibility of establishing a provincial Crown corporation for the purpose of bringing and maintaining more reliable and affordable electricity onto the grid in the event that private generators find it too risky to do so under the CERs.
This Alberta Crown corporation would be a provincial entity and would not recognize the CERs as constitutionally valid. If needed, the Crown corporation would work with industry and other stakeholders to bring on needed electricity onto the grid, either through building new generation or purchasing existing generation assets (i.e. natural gas power plants) that private industry would otherwise not build or shut down due to the uncertainty and penalties established by the CERs. It could also be used as a means of assisting and partnering with industry to de-risk investments in nuclear power and other emerging green generation if needed.
Alberta must be prepared should the CERs lead to divestment in natural gas generation and power plants being turned off in 2035. This initiative would be an important first step towards protecting Albertans’ continued access to reliable and affordable electricity should this occur.
The resolution also urges the government to use all legal means necessary to oppose the federal electricity regulation, including legal challenges.
- According to the Constitution of Canada, legislating and regulating the development of electricity explicitly falls within the jurisdiction of the province (Section 92A (1) (c)).
- Alberta has reduced electricity emissions by 53 per cent since 2005.
- Analysis by the Alberta Electric System Operator determined that Alberta would face disproportionate risk and costs, compared with other provinces, as a result of the federal electricity regulations.
- Alberta’s grid had seven alerts during colder months in 2022 and had three alerts in summer 2023, underscoring the importance of having sufficient stable baseload power sources like gas, hydro and nuclear available year-round. Alberta must continue to rely on a diverse mix of intermittent and baseload options to prevent future brownouts and blackouts and maintain a reliable grid.
- The Public Policy Forum previously indicated that the cost of the federal electricity approach could be more than $1 trillion and as high as $1.7 trillion.
Help Us Preserve Alberta’s Sport History
As we approach Giving Tuesday, we invite you to join us in celebrating the spirit of athleticism and honoring the legends who have left an indelible mark on the world of sports. At Alberta’s Sports Hall of Fame, we are dedicated to preserving the rich history of sports, recognizing outstanding sports heroes, and inspiring future generations.
Why Support Our Hall of Fame?
- Preserving Sporting Legacy: Our Hall of Fame stands as a testament to the achievements, dedication, and passion of athletes and builders who have shaped the landscape of sports. By supporting us, you contribute to the preservation of their legacy for years to come.
- Inspiring Future Champions: Every inductee enshrined in our Hall of Fame serves as a source of inspiration for aspiring individuals. Your generosity helps us develop programs that foster the next generation of champions, instilling values of discipline, teamwork, and perseverance.
- Community Engagement: We believe in the power of sports to bring communities together. With your support, we can organize events, outreach programs, and educational initiatives that promote inclusivity, diversity, and the joy of sports within our community.
- $25: Provides resources for the maintenance and preservation of historical artifacts.
- $50: Supports educational programs that introduce schoolchildren to the history and importance of sports.
- $100: Contributes to the development of interactive exhibits, making the Hall of Fame an engaging experience for visitors.
- $250 and above: Enables us to expand our outreach, bringing the magic of sports to underserved communities.
This Giving Tuesday, be a part of something legendary. Your contribution, no matter the size, makes a significant impact on our ability to celebrate, educate, and inspire through the power of sports.Donate today at https://www.
Alberta Sports Hall of Fame Team
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