Learning Resources Policy
Effective July 1, 2016, independent school authorities are required to have policies and procedures on how learning resources are chosen for use in schools. The learning resources requirement is authorized under the authority of the Independent School Act, s 4(1)(b) which states:
On application by an authority, the inspector must issue or renew a certificate classifying an independent school into one or more of the groups set out in the Schedule if the inspector is satisfied that the authority and the independent school meet (b) the educational standards established by the minister, and Section 4 of the Ministerial Order 41/91, the Education Standards Order. The Ministry of Education no longer conducts evaluation processes to recommend learning resources, leaving the responsibility to the school authority. This policy sets out the procedures that determine how learning resources are chosen, as well as how concerns or challenges will be addressed by Delta Christian School.
- Definition of Learning Resources
Learning Resources are texts, videos, software, and instructional materials that teachers use to assist students to meet the expectations for learning defined by provincial and local curricula. This policy is specific to learning resources which form the core program collection of resources. Learning resources used in the classroom will be evaluated and approved by Delta Christian School with consideration given to curriculum fit, pedagogy, social considerations, age and developmental appropriateness, as well as the school authority’s philosophical, cultural and/or religious values.
- Learning Resources Approval Process
Delta Christian School will encourage teachers to utilize education media that have been formally evaluated before being used in the classroom. The evaluation process involves the principal, curriculum leaders, and input from appropriate teachers. The recommended scope of professional learning resources for review include Primary (Gr K-3) and Intermediate (Gr 4-7).
The evaluation criteria used in determining appropriate learning resources for the school will include, but are not limited to:
– Supporting the learning standards and outcomes of the curriculum
– Assisting students in making connections between what they learn in school and its practical application in their lives
– Addressing developmental and age appropriateness
– Having effective instructional and technical design
– Meeting the requirements set by copyright and privacy (PIPA) legislation
– Suitability based on the pedagogical, social, philosophical, cultural and/or religious values of Delta Christian School.
Evaluating resources from the perspective of pedagogical, social, philosophical, cultural and/or religious values will:
– encourage understanding and promote positive social attitudes and respect for diversity and individual differences
– ensure that BC students will see themselves and their life experiences, within a free, pluralistic, and democratic society and evidenced in the learning materials they use in their classroom
– identify potential controversial or offensive elements that may exist in the content or presentation, and highlight where resources might support positive social attitudes, diversity, and demonstrate tolerance and respect for individual differences.
Resource evaluation will be based on one or more of the following inclusion criteria: (schools will adjust criteria accordingly)
- multiculturalism and diversity
- accessibility o beliefs and values
- cultural attributes o socio-economic factors
- ethical and legal considerations
- course content, skills, and competencies
- respect for individual differences
- social responsibility
- democratic principles
- service learning
- pedagogical perspectives
- Authority Approval
The Board of Directors via the admin team will approve resources used by Delta Christian School which then become recommended resources for a five-year period unless they are withdrawn. The authority may continue to use the learning resources after five years if the authority grants an extension of an additional five-year period. Learning resource approval is confirmed by an “approved to purchase” by the principal.
- Withdrawal of a Recommended Learning Resource
Learning Resources will maintain a recommended status for five years, after which continued status will be subject to, but not limited to, criteria such as curriculum relevance, currency, and availability. The recommendation of withdrawal will be made by the admin team in consultation with appropriate teachers and curriculum leaders. The recommended scope of professional learning resources review will be Primary (Gr K-3), Intermediate (Gr 4-7).
A learning resources withdrawal will be confirmed by the principal removing said resource from the building.
- Challenge to the Use of Authority Recommended Learning Resources
Challenges to the use of authority recommended learning resources must be made in writing to the principal, identifying the learning resource and stating the reason why the resource(s) may not be suitable. Challenges will only be accepted from individuals in the school community whose children are directly engaged with the learning resource(s), educators who use the resource(s) or Ministry of Education staff. The person issuing the challenge must be able to demonstrate first-hand knowledge of the resource (i.e. have read the resource).
Within 14 days of written receipt of a learning resource challenge, the principal will convene a meeting of a committee, consisting of a minimum of three representatives of Delta Christian School, one of whom must be an administrator/curriculum leader and another a practicing teacher. The practicing teacher must have at least three years of experience in the grade level(s) and subject area(s) for which the resource is used.
Based on the committee’s recommendation, the authority may dismiss the challenge, raise the awareness of the implications of using the resource with the teaching staff, communicate with the publisher and/or withdraw the recommended resource from further use in the school.
The individual issuing the challenge will be notified of the committee’s decision in writing within 14 days of the decision.
- Sources of Learning Resources
Delta Christian School may use the services of the Education Resource Acquisition Consortium (ERAC) to assist them in choosing or approving learning resources.
(List other sources used by Delta Christian School. Ex. Online list of resources, Open Education Resources, Textbook Publishers, etc.)