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Alberta Home Education Association

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Something Special Happened

22.02.26.Something Special Happened ---banner

The heart cry of the special needs families in the home education community, to be seen and treated as equals, has finally been heard and responded to. It is with a thankful and joyful heart that we are able to confirm that special needs families will have access to supports equal to that of the public system. AHEA has worked hard to see that this issue was addressed. Our discussions specific to this topic started in July of 2020. AHEA has had two very specific goals in our advocacy - philosophical agreement and practical action, as explained in our previous article A Special Report. Our initial focus was refined to one very clear and pointed question:

The answer to our question was clearly given within the Throne Speech delivered by the Lieutenant Governor of Alberta on February 22, 2022. It was an exciting moment when these words were heard…

We had seen some initial movement on this issue this last fall, which was encouraging. However, the fact is that the practical action was still of help to some families and not all, and not as full in scope as we wished. We wanted to see the kind of course correction that will result in more than a nod in the direction of home education families. Our idea of the practical side of this question had seen us focus on requesting three specific items:

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eAlert: Bill 24 Ramifications Continue Apace

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More Bill 24 ramifications occurred last week. The Alberta government is demanding that independent schools renounce their religious policies. Bill 24 was sold as enforcing certain types of clubs in schools. Now it's being used to restrict the religious basis on which many Alberta independent schools are formed.
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Alberta Politics

This will be a critical year in Alberta politics. We will need to be ready to respond as events unfold.

  • ​ We need to continue to build representation within the United Conservative Party (UCP), New Democrat Party (NDP), and every other political party, so that each party will invite AHEA and its members to their discussion table. It is the only way to fulfill our mandate. AHEA exists to represent our interests in government so that we can enjoy the fruits of that labour and seek to maintain the home education option.
  • It is critical that we work during this year to remain engaged in the political process and be as well informed as possible. Please keep an eye on our Political Updates page on the AHEA website, the E-Alerts that arrive in your inbox (you can subscribe to receive these at www.aheaonline.com), as well as the AHEA Facebook page. Here we can provide information on the educational platforms and statements from all the parties, as we are able. We will focus on passing on information, even when we all may not agree. As homeschoolers, I know we value the freedom of expression and the right to form your own opinion. However, as always, I encourage you to be kind and clear in your comments so that the focus is on the discussion.
  • We need to be active in each riding, in each association, on the executive, and even as candidates ourselves! The nomination of good candidates will have an enormous impact; we want representatives we can stand behind. At this point, the UCP has the most supportive policies with regard to home education. It appears that UCP nominations will be happening soon and will be staggered, so you will need to check your riding for actual dates (https://www.unitedconservative.ca). Visit https://act.albertandp.ca/events for information on NDP nominations, https://www.albertaparty.ca/open-nomination-contests for Alberta Party nominations, and https://www.albertaliberal.com/take_action for information on Liberal Party nominations.
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