The Education Act

About the School Act

The School Act sets out the goals, roles and responsibilities of Alberta’s Early Childhood Services to Grade 12 (ECS-12) education system.

The School Act

School Act Regulations
The regulations take their authority from specific sections of the School Act and describe additional legal requirements that must be met by the Government of Alberta, school boards, charter schools, private schools, teachers and parents. The relevant sections of the School Act are identified after each regulation.

School Councils Regulation s.22(10)

 

The Education Act

Since the fall of 2015, the Education Act has been the subject of an extensive government review. The School Act, which has served Alberta's students for almost three decades, remains in effect.

The draft Education Act, received Royal Assent in 2012. Decisions are now being made regarding its proclamation.

Overview of the Education Act and Areas of Interest to Parents and School Councils (June 2019)

Education Amendment Act

The Education Amendment Act, 2019, Bill 8, was introduced in the Legislature by Education Minister LaGrange on June 5, 2019.

Amendments

With the proposed amendments, some of the current rules would not change upon proclamation of the Education Act, including:   

  • The age individuals are entitled to access K-12 education (up to age 19).
  • Residency rules (based on custodial parent).
  • Compulsory age of attendance (16 years of age).
  • Student transportation.
  • Restriction on charging school fees for specific instructional supplies and materials.
  • Leadership certification implementation.
  • Superintendent compensation rules.
  • Standardized age of entry to kindergarten to come into effect on Sept. 1, 2020.

If Bill 8 is passed, the Education Act would come into force on Sept. 1, 2019.

 

Bill 8: The Education Amendment Act, 2019 has been introduced to update the Education Act, which was passed in 2012 after widespread consultation, but was not brought into force.

If passed, the amended Education Act would improve student success, strengthen parental rights, enhance local decision-making for school boards, increase education choice and improve accountability within the system.

Key changes

Amendments proposed in Bill 8 ensure some of the current rules are carried over to the Education Act to provide certainty to families and educators, including:

  • age students can access K-12 education (up to 19 years of age)
  • compulsory age of attendance (16 years)
  • residency rules based on the custodial parent
  • student transportation
  • leadership certification implementation
  • restriction on charging school fees for specific instructional supplies and materials
  • superintendent compensation rules
  • standardized age of entry to kindergarten to come into effect September 1, 2020

If passed, Bill 8 would also:

  • enhance parental rights by establishing a policy respecting the resolution of disputes at the school level between parents and school staff
  • increase education choice by removing the  cap on  charter schools in the province
  • allow school jurisdictions to provide alternative programs outside of their geographic boundary
  • allow students to create inclusion groups, including GSAs and QSAs and ensure students’ privacy is protected under privacy legislation (FOIP and PIPA)
  • give school electors the choice of which school board to vote for or run in
  • increase the accountability and oversight of private and charter school authorities to ensure they are delivering high-quality education to students
  • give the minister the ability to cancel or suspend the registration or accreditation of a private school if the financial administration of the school places the learning environment of students at risk
  • give school boards more autonomy to decide their own electoral ward and subdivision structure

For more information, read the What is Changing document. (PDF, 778 KB)

If passed, the amended Education Act would come into effect September 1, 2019.