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Rally highlights concerns with the state of public education in Alberta


Thousands of concerned parents and educators attended a rally at the Alberta legislature Saturday afternoon demanding better funding for classrooms.

Hosted by the Alberta Teachers' Association (ATA) and the Alberta School Councils' Association (ASCA), attendees were seen holding signs saying "stand for public education," "everyone wins with well-funded public schools," and "don't mess with Ed."

"We came together today to rally for funding in education for classroom sizes and bring to more attention to the horrible curriculum being implemented right now," said Brandi Rai, ASCA president.

"With new leadership and as an election is coming up, we hope to make sure that every party has a platform that has education as a priority," Rai added. "That they understand what is actually happening in education right now."

Wing Lee, a parent with children in the education system and spokesperson for Support our Students Alberta says the province should be focused on reducing the sizes of classes.

"In the past few years," Lee said, "we've seen a lot of defunding of the public education system."

For Lee, now is the time to make classes smaller since many students are trying to catch up with learning after years of pandemic disruptions.

"We are struggling with huge classrooms, and kids are not getting the attention that they deserve for their education."

Fellow parent Tom Yohemas echoed her view. He has four kids, including one in Grade 4 and another in Grade 7.

"The fact that in 2022 we have to be here to rally for proper support of education in Alberta is criminal," Yohemas said.

Jason Schilling, ATA president, said the rally is the start of a new seven-month advocacy campaign to keep education front and centre.

"There needs to be further conversation so that we can fully inform the new premier," Schilling said.

"We want to see a strong public education system," he added.

Schilling hoped the strong turnout sent a strong signal to Alberta's political leaders.

"They want to see a modern curriculum and the needs of our students met," he said. "They came to here to show that support and to tell those who are in power here at the legislature building why it is important." Top Stories

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