A new school year signifies a fresh start for people involved in the education system. The way B.C. students learn will change with the new First Nations integrated curriculum. Learning expectations have become more personalized and focused on meeting the students’ needs. Aboriginal Education, numeracy, and literacy will be emphasized in all subjects when the new system starts. The delivery of class lessons will have a focus on the use of technology. BC

The new curriculum is built around Aboriginal education, STEM, and literacy. STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. There is less pressure for students to learn about the Arts, though it is not eliminated completely. Marks will now include how the student is approaching a subject, including participation in class and creative thinking.  Over the next three years, the province of B.C. will gradually integrate coding lessons for students in Kindergarten to grade nine. The expectation is students will have the skills to get a job that involves technology once they graduate, as we live in a world where those skills are ideal when entering the workforce.

Students will learn about Aboriginal culture and history in subjects such as History, Social Studies, and Geography. “I hope to broaden student’s understanding of the past and make connections to current issues Aboriginal peoples are dealing with today. We should be acknowledging that there are different viewpoints, because we are past the colonial opinion that one is better than the other,” said Ms. Caroline Ross, a Social Studies teacher at Riverside Secondary. Students are expected to learn about events such as the residential schools that Aboriginal children were sent to during the 17 century up until 1997, when the last residential school in Canada closed down.

Before the new curriculum was planned, everything was based upon standards, evaluation, and assessments of basic skills such as Mathematics and Language Arts. Now, those foundations have been replaced with possibilities to go further than ever before.

The new methods will change admission requirements and how students are accepted into universities and post-secondary institutions. “I believe that our students and staff are in a great position to take advantage of the new curriculum. I have confidence that it will help prepare our students for the future,” said Mr. Bryan Gee, a teacher at Riverside Secondary.