Canada’s unemployment levels are one of the lowest in the world and it is still dropping. While this is an ideal situation for any country’s economy it also means that state department, private enterprise and big business are find it hard to find suitable talent and are forced to look off shore to fill these gaps.
An area that is in serious need of a constant supply of qualified and experienced talent is the country’s educational system. Unlike South Africa where the system is managed by state government in Canada each province or territory takes responsibility for its own education system. Running it as it sees fit while addressing the needs of the local community.
The government of Newfoundland and Labrador is one such area that will be employing 355 educators and education specialists over the next 3 years.
Over three years, the government aims to hire 104 reading specialists, 200 teaching and learning assistants, 39 additional teacher librarians and 12 additional ESL teachers for Newfoundland and Labrador classrooms announced Education Minister Al Hawkins on Friday.
Hiring will start in September in 40 schools, and will continue in September 2019 and 2020. The list includes 104 reading specialists, 200 teaching and learning assistants, 39 additional teacher librarians and 12 additional ESL teachers.
The province's spring budget included CA $3.1 million for the added positions, and Premier Dwight Ball says the cost will increase in coming years as more schools get their assistants.
"I think, when you look at it, it's really 'at what point do you want to pay?'" Ball said to Radio Canada.
Hawkins added that the provincial government is considering new models for inclusive education, which could mean students with exceptionalities spend more time outside of a traditional classroom.
"We're willing to invest early so we actually create benefits and opportunities for our students in the future."
"We know, right now, when it comes to math, reading, inclusive education, indigenous education, multiculturalism and those sorts of things, that we need to do better."
The provincial government unveiled their The Way Forward action plan on education in Grand Falls-Windsor on Friday afternoon. The plan is a response to recommendations delivered by The Premier's Task Force on Improving Educational Outcomes, published last year.
Education task force suggests overhaul of inclusive education, math and reading curricula
Ball said his government will address each of the 82 recommendations from that report. The total cost of the education action plan will be around $50 million, he said.
Tony Stack, CEO of the Newfoundland and Labrador English School District, said a reading specialist will eventually be assigned to every school that includes students between Kindergarten and Grade 6.
Source: Canada Broadcasting Corporation