Government proclaimed amendments to the Education Act today, Oct.17, making the new school review process law. The new process focuses on collaboration, community engagement, and better long-range planning for schools.
“The amendments to the Education Act reflect the recommendations we received from consultations with Nova Scotians,” said Education and Early Childhood Development Minister Karen Casey. “Through a long-range outlook and more public engagement, we are confident that school communities and school boards have an improved process to review schools.”
The amendments were passed last spring and with today’s proclamation they are now law. This summer, Ms. Casey released the guidelines and criteria for the hub school model.
The school review process will now require:
— school boards to identify a school or a group of schools for review, based on information provided in a long-range outlook and a recommendation for review
— the establishment of a local school review committee that will conduct reviews, including public consultation, for each group of schools and look at a variety of scenarios, with help from an independent facilitator, if required
— the preparation of a report and recommendations for the school board by the review committee, not just school board staff, parents or the community
— more flexibility on when to start a review
— school review milestones will have to be completed within a period of days and not set calendar dates.
With the new process, school boards will remain responsible for the final decision on whether a school is closed.
For information on the new school review process, hub model guidelines and more, visit www.ednet.ns.ca/schoolreview .