The Classroom Improvement Fund (CIF) was part of the central agreement reached between the Alberta Teachers’ Association and the Teachers Employer Bargaining Association in May. Under the agreement, school boards and teachers will create a joint proposal for how the CIF money will be used by school authorities.
Alberta Education specified that dollars should be used for staffing and/or professional learning with an emphasis on supporting students with special needs.
Clearview’s teachers were surveyed asking what their priorities would be for use of the CIF dollars. A key priority identified was to have additional training for teachers with respect to the Scholastic Resources. As well, teachers identified a need for additional educational assistants.
After examining survey results completed by 68 per cent of their teachers, Superintendent Barron, along with school principals, developed the proposal that was sent to Alberta Education outlining four components: (1) hiring of additional Educational Assistants, (2) hiring of a consultant to support staff in inclusive supports for students, (3) the provision of a professional learning fund to support staff attending special education conferences/workshops, and (4) hiring literacy consultants to assist elementary teachers address literacy rates as identified through the Star Reading benchmarks.
On June 27, Clearview received approval from Alberta Education to use the $362,000 CIF as follows:
• $212,000 of the budget goes to the hiring of additional educational assistants.
• $125,000 of the budget goes to additional professional learning of teachers on literacy. Funds will be used to hire a literacy expert who will work shoulder to shoulder with teachers in our division.
• $15,000 of the budget goes to additional professional learning to support the Collaborative Response Model.
• $10,000 of the budget goes to additional professional learning with respect to special education/inclusive learning.
“We are very appreciative of these additional funds to support our most vulnerable students,” said Superintendent Barron. “Our proposal was developed in collaboration with staff of which I am justly proud. I believe both our students and staff will benefit from this proposal.”