The Ministry of Education is in the process of revising the K-12 curriculum across British Columbia.
A new K-9 curriculum will be implemented in September. Draft documents of the Grade 10 to 12 curriculum are now available on the ministry website, giving parents, educators, and students the opportunity to give input to teams of teachers working on graduation program courses.
Along with changes to the curriculum, changes to assessment are coming as well.
Starting in the 2016-17 school year, instead of five provincial exams — English 10, Math 10, Science 10, Social Studies 11, and English 12 — there will be only two provincial graduation program assessments required: English 12, for literary assessment, and a math assessment, currently in development.
Grade 10 English, Math, and Science, and Social Studies 11 will be assessed by teachers using classroom assessments instead of standardized tests.
Having two standardized provincial assessments will parallel the current post-secondary admissions practise of using English 12 for admission, and then classroom assessments in other provincial courses.
Coding to come to classrooms
Along with revised curriculums and assessments, the ministry announcement indicated all students between Grades 6 and 9 will learn computational thinking related to coding, and must complete a 15-hour coding module before the end of Grade 9. This will start in the 2018-19 school year.
Funding to train staff in teaching coding will be allocated to districts in August, with train-the-trainer sessions set up in November.
Rural districts will be allocated funding for travel expenses to regional centres for four teachers from each district to attend these coding sessions.
Some funding given to districts can also be used for teaching and learning resources, such as robotics kits and software license costs.
Healthy schools coordinator grant approved
School District 10 has applied for, and received, a grant for a part time healthy schools coordinator for the 2016-17 school year.
The Interior Health Authority, through its healthy schools initiative, has been funding larger districts for the past six years. This year, they put the call out to smaller districts. Their initiative has identified three goal areas for health promotion: mental health and socio-emotional learning, substance abuse, and nutrition and health.
An advertisement for the position will be posted shortly, for five to seven hours per week to assist in existing and new healthy school initiatives in all district schools.
District Film Update
Five new district films have been created. These include International Education, which features six international students currently in the district. The students wanted to focus on sharing many of the outdoor learning opportunities of the area, such as the hot springs, golf, and biking along the lake shore.
The Outdoor Classroom is about Erika Momeyer’s K-3 class at Edgewood elementary school and their exploration of the forest around the school, along with the game cameras they use to learn about the animals in their area.
Solar Project is about Grade 10 to 12 students involved in learning about, and installing, solar panels on the roofs of Nakusp elementary school and Lucerne elementary secondary school. They were interviewed about their work experiences and learning about renewable energy and solar grid installations.