Executive Council
Education and Early Childhood Development
September 10, 2018

Premier Ball Marks Progress on Education Action Plan

The Honourable Dwight Ball, Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, today helped mark the start of the 2018-19 school year and progress of the Education Action Plan while speaking with students at East Point Elementary School. Premier Ball was joined by the Honourable Al Hawkins, Minister of Education and Early Childhood Development and Bernard Davis, MHA for Virginia Waters-Pleasantville.

Implementation of the five-year Education Action Plan is moving swiftly with close to 40 per cent of the actions already completed or underway. This is resulting in a more inclusive learning environment that is more responsive to students’ strengths and needs. Key actions undertaken to date include:

  • Creation of 54 teaching and learning assistant positions participating in the Student Support Services Model. This will increase to 200 over the next three years.
  • Six permanent K-6 mathematics program specialists with qualifications in mathematics, mathematics education, and where possible, qualifications in primary/elementary education.
  • Five permanent program specialists with expertise in reading instruction to provide leadership and curriculum support to the school-based reading specialists.
  • Improved access and affordability of child-care for children.
  • Increased allocation of learning resource teachers.

These actions follow the introduction of full-day kindergarten, which has benefited more than 10,000 children and their families, since being introduced in September 2016.

The Provincial Government has set improved infrastructure as a priority as it creates better learning and working environments for students, teachers, and staff. This year, $43.3 million is being invested in education infrastructure, which is highlighted by:

  • Awarding a contract for a technical advisor to replace Bay d’Espoir Academy in the very near future. The advisor will assist in preparing the request for proposals for construction. Construction is expected to begin in 2019 with completion anticipated for the 2021-22 school year.
  • A tender for design and construction of a new Grades 5-8 school in Paradise will be issued in September.
  • A request for proposals will be issued in September for construction of a new school in Coley’s Point. Construction is expected to begin in 2019 with completion anticipated for January 2021.
  • A request for proposals will be issued in fall 2018 for engineering and architectural services for a new Francophone school for the St. John’s metro area.
  • Construction of the extension of Mobile High is underway with completion and occupancy planned for February 2019. The extension includes nine new classrooms, a computer room, and washrooms.

Supporting education and implementing the Education Action Plan delivers on commitments in The Way Forward to strengthen the province’s economic foundation and deliver better services and better outcomes for residents. The Way Forward outlines all actions the Provincial Government is taking to achieve a strong, diversified province with a high standard of living, and can be viewed at thewayforward.gov.nl.ca

Quotes
“There is no better place to invest than in our children and their education. The excitement of students, teachers and staff at East Point Elementary today highlighted that importance as we helped kick-off the 2018-19 school year. Guided by the Education Action Plan, our government will continue to move swiftly to strengthen the province’s learning and education system for teachers and students.”
Honourable Dwight Ball
Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador

“As we embark on a new school year, we are excited to see the implementation of one of the key actions of the Education Action Plan, the placement of new teacher and learning assistants. We feel these new positions will assist the needs of our students and be and important resource to our school communities.”
Honourable Al Hawkins
Minister of Education and Early Childhood Development

Le premier ministre Ball souligne les progrès accomplis dans la mise en œuvre du Plan d’action en matière d’éducation

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Learn More
Education Action Plan: www.ed.gov.nl.ca/edu/EAP-report.pdfPDF icon

The Premier’s Task Force on Educational Outcomes report, Now is the Time: www.ed.gov.nl.ca/edu/task_force/report.pdfPDF icon

Follow us on Twitter: @GovNL and @EDU_GovNLexternal link icon

Media contacts
Michelle Cannizzaro
Office of the Premier
709-729-3960
michellecannizzaro@gov.nl.ca

Debbie Marnell
Education and Early Childhood Development
709-729-1906, 699-9048
debbiemarnell@gov.nl.ca

2018 09 10                              10:20 a.m.