The Government of Saskatchewan is launching a new initiative to improve student achievement in the province to ensure all students from pre-kindergarten to Grade 12 are provided with regular and consistent feedback on their progress. It will also identify and provide the assistance each student requires in the classroom.
“We have excellent schools in our province and some of the most dedicated and professional teachers working with our students,” Education Minister Donna Harpauer said. “But as a system we know we can do better for our students. We see our scores in international and national testing falling below the Canadian average. We want to ensure that when Saskatchewan students apply for jobs or post secondary institutions anywhere in Canada or around the world, those applications rise to the top because of our academic reputation.”
Saskatchewan is the last province in Canada to have a province-wide approach to student assessment. This approach has proven to be successful in other jurisdictions. Research indicates that regular, individual assessments, combined with the appropriate instructional supports, have the greatest impact on student success.
Currently the overlap of assessment practices from school division to school division leaves students and parents without consistent, practical and predictable information on a student’s achievement. The new approach to student achievement will ensure the results of students’ assessments are shared with students and parents, which did not happen in the past. In addition to the assessment information, the appropriate instructional supports will also be put in place so everyone can work together to help students be successful.
The new plan for student achievement will also benefit teachers and parents. It will provide teachers with constructive information that will inform them of the appropriate resources they can access to help students. They will also benefit from a reduction in the overlap of assessments that is currently taking place. The new approach will provide parents with a broader perspective on how their child is doing.