Honouring our Commitment to Creating Stronger Classrooms

Your Liberal government is committed to improving Nova Scotia’s education system. That’s why we created the Council to Improve Classroom Conditions. We are striving to ensure the recommendations that the council provided be completed and addressed, the most recent being a new attendance policy.

Starting October 1st, this new policy will address the growing concern of student absenteeism in schools across Nova Scotia.

“The policy is intended to help improve student attendance through a balance of supports, incentives and consequences, without adding to the workload of teachers,” said Zach Churchill, Minister of Education and Early Childhood Development. “Any time a student misses class is a missed opportunity to learn. And with one-quarter of students missing 16 days or more of school in a year, we want to work with parents, students, teachers and the Council to Improve Classroom Conditions to get kids to class, so they can fully participate and engage in learning.”

As Liberals, we understand how important this issue is to parents and teachers alike. We know this policy is a significant step towards ensuring that we identify and address absenteeism early, before it becomes a problem for students.

Under the policy:

  • Students will be considered absent unless they are attending an activity that directly relates to their learning, or a school activity
  • Teachers will not be required to prepare additional materials or release test and exam information ahead of their release to the class
  • Grade 10 to 12 students who miss more than 20 per cent of class time for a given course may lose a credit for that course based upon individual circumstance and the professional judgment of the teacher and principal
  • Addressing absenteeism or chronic lateness will vary based on the age, grade and the individual circumstances of the student.

We’re looking forward to seeing the results of this proactive approach to absenteeism as it helps provide a better foundation for teachers to do their jobs, and provide young Nova Scotia with a stronger start in life.