Red Deer Public Schools is committed to combatting learning disruption as a result of COVID-19
Red Deer Public Schools continues to move forward with its literacy and numeracy intervention program, which has helped support students who have experienced lags in their learning as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Earlier this fall, the Board of Trustees committed to funding $700,000 for COVID-19 recovery. In addition, Red Deer Public recently received close to $108,000 in learning disruption funding from Alberta Education.
“Our Board has gone above and beyond the government-provided funding as we want to do everything possible to ensure each and every student reaches their full academic potential,” said Della Ruston, Associate Superintendent of Learning Services for Red Deer Public Schools.
Alberta students completed mandatory assessments in Grades 2 and 3 in September and Grades 1s will be assessed in January. This data identifies students who have fallen behind in literacy and numeracy due to the pandemic. The additional funding provided by the Board allows for identified students to receive small group instruction by trained staff for 30 minutes a day over a period of time. It has allowed Red Deer Public to hire Teachers or Educational Assistants to complete the intervention work.
Last school year, the Board committed $1 million to be used toward COVID-19 recovery which saw more than 500 students from Grades 2-7 improve their numeracy and literacy skills. “This initiative has had a significantly positive impact on our students, and we believe will continue to help our students get back on track and mitigate the impact of the pandemic,” said Ruston. “We are very appreciative of our Board for prioritizing our students and in ensuring they are set up for success.”
Board Chair Nicole Buchanan said as we continue to move through recovery from the pandemic, the Board recognizes the importance of supporting learning gaps in students.
“Our priorities at Red Deer Public Schools are Literacy and Numeracy, Equity and Student Success and Completion. The Board’s $700,000 commitment to COVID-19 recovery aligns with all of these priorities,” she said. “We need to ensure our students are learning to read so that they can read to learn as they progress through not only their education journey with Red Deer Public but throughout their journey beyond grade school. In supporting our students through this initiative, we are setting them up to reach their fullest potential.”