Town and Country – June 26, 2018 La Francophonie est forte en Alberta

On the year anniversary of Alberta’s French policy, schools across the Town & Country region continue to see steady enrolment

Athabasca-Sturgeon-Redwater MLA ColinPiquette said that Francophone culture has come a long ways since his father, Leo Piquette, attempted to ask a question in the Legislature in French when he was the MLA for Athabasca-Lac La Biche in 1987.

“At the time, it caused a major controversy, with opponents thinking he was trying to bring in compulsory bilingualism within the Legislature,” Piquette said. “But he was really practicing his legal right under Section 10 of the Northwest Territories Act, which allowed French to be spoken in the Alberta and Saskatchewan legislatures.

In 1988, the Supreme Court of Canada even confirmed that. When I more recently spoke French in the Legislature, it was not a big deal at all.” Piquette said the province has become more inclusive and pragmatic in terms of understanding its historical obligations.

“Alberta now has one of the fastest growing Francophone communities in the country,” he said. “People moving to the province are bringing a lot of skills, knowledge, and talent. Having that level of respect for the French language and culture is definitely more of a boon for us than a hindrance.”




Vilna Kindergarten Graduation – June 14, 2018

I was honoured to bring greetings on behalf Premier Rachel Notley and Education Minister David Eggen and to congratulate Vilna School’s Kindergarten class, who celebrated their graduation. I always appreciate attending ceremonies highlighting the importance of education and the potential of young students. 

Alberta’s students are some of the most accomplished in Canada – because of the hard work of Alberta’s teachers, support staff and students families. So many go on to become world class scientists, engineers, future teachers, or even an MLA. 

Thank you again to the Vilna School  for having me for this important event. I look forward to visiting you again!



Redwater School receives a Climate and Environment Student Action Challenge grant – March 1, 2018

Students at Redwater School are building an outdoor classroom this spring. All students and groups are invited to participate making the space somewhere they can enjoy nature, relax, learn and grow their own food.  It is so great to see youth engaged and thinking of exciting ways to protect and nurture our environment. 

Climate and Environment Student Action Challenge

Do you have an idea for a project that could reduce the environmental footprint of your school? Alberta Environment and Parks (AEP) could help make it happen!

The Climate and Environment Student Action Challenge invites Alberta students from kindergarten to grade 12 to develop a school-based initiative or project that will address climate change or minimize other negative human impacts to the environment.

Students are invited to submit their project idea for a chance to win one of 10 grants (maximum of $1,000) that can be used to turn their proposal into a reality – and give them hands-on experience tackling an environmental issue that directly impacts them, their school or their community.

Successful applicants have now been selected from each school level (Division 1, 2, 3, 4) for 2017/2018.

Participating teams are invited to contribute to the online learning community! Provide real-time project updates, share tips, ask questions and inspire new levels of learning – the provincial Climate and Environment Student Action Challenge community is a great way to explore new ideas throughout the school year.

Students at Redwater School received a grant for their outdoor classroom.

Stand Against Bullying – February 28, 2018

Pink Shirt Day may take place only once a year, but taking a stand against bullying and making our world a more welcoming place needs to be a part of our daily routine. I’m proud our government is committed to promoting healthy relationships everywhere Albertans live, learn, work and play. 

  • If you see bullying—say something.
  • If you are being bullied—tell someone.
  • And we all benefit when we embrace diversity, welcome differences and promote understanding.
  • If you are being bullied, our government provides community supports that are available to support you.

The Redwater Review – January 30, 2018 – Parents, trustees, MLA concerned about funding for rural schools

When contacted later Athabasca-Sturgeon-Redwater MLA Colin Piquette confirmed the 2.4 km busing restriction is being changed.

“It was removed as part of the legislative requirement in the School Act,” he said. “The Ministry is tasked with coming up with new
regulations for busing by the 2018-2019 school year. This came out of public consultations around the School Act.” He expects the regulations on busing radius will be set this spring.

Piquette explained that while there was no consensus during consultations, there is a shared understanding and concern for rural children who have to walk in unsafe conditions.

Asked if he agrees with the AVPS board that rural schools have different requirements than urban ones Piquette said, “Most definitely. This is something I’ve been working with them on and I’ve been advocating for with my government. Rural education faces some challenges urban schools don’t, and the funding formula should reflect that.”

Looking for help this summer? Why not hire a student! Financial assistance for wages is available


The 2018 Canada Summer Jobs (CSJ) application deadline for employers is February 2, 2018Canada Summer Jobs is a Government of Canada initiative. It provides funding for not-for-profit organizations, public sector employers and small businesses with 50 or fewer full-time employees to create summer jobs for students between the ages of 15 and 30.

The application form as well as the applicant guide are currently available at You can submit your application online, by mail or in person at any Service Canada Centre.

We encourage you to submit your 2018 application online. By doing so, you will benefit from a fast, easy-to-use, and secure way of applying as you will:

  • have access to the Canada Summer Jobs application 24/7, from any location, allowing you to complete it at your convenience;
  • ensure your application is received immediately by Service Canada;
  • receive an instant acknowledgement confirming that your application has been received; and,
  • avoid postal delays.

There are two systems available to enable you to apply online:

  1. Grants and Contributions Online Services (GCOS): If you already have a GCOS account, please use this online platform to submit an online application; or
  2. CSJ online application form.

More information about how CSJ benefits both students and employers is available on our YouTube page

For more information:


Call: 1-800-935-5555 (ATS: 1-800-926-9105)

Visit: a Service Canada Centre

If you are interested in attending an information session, please reply to this email ( providing the following so we can provide you with the teleconference number:



Date of session:

Your name:

Your organization:

Your telephone number:

Your email:

Anticipated number of organizations to attend the session:



Date: Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Time: 10 am (MST) and 1pm (MST)


Date: Friday, January 12, 2018

Time: 10 am (MST) and 1pm (MST)


Date: Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Time: 10 am (MST) and 1pm (MST)


Date: Friday, January 19, 2018

Time: 10 am (MST) and 1pm (MST)


Date: Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Time: 10 am (MST) and 1pm (MST)


Date: Thursday, January 25, 2018

Time: 10 am (MST) and 1pm (MST)


Date: Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Time: 10 am (MST) and 1pm (MST)


Date: Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Time: 10 am (MST) and 1pm (MST)

Membership Statement – Athabasca Coalition 4 Success – December 5, 2017

Thank you, Madam Speaker. Recently I had the opportunity to attend a presentation by the Athabasca Coalition 4 Success, and I was so impressed with what they’ve accomplished that I want to share it with members of the Assembly here today.

Madam Speaker, as a parent of a child with special needs I know from direct experience how difficult it can be to find appropriate summer care, especially in rural areas. The partners who make up the Athabasca Coalition 4 Success recognize this and have created a unique summer program in Athabasca to help youth grow.

This initiative allows community partners to work together to help children and youth attend events and activities in their community on a regular and consistent basis, to interact with their peers, develop social skills, and have the opportunity to successfully participate in community events. What’s more, they do this by leveraging existing funding streams and capacities.

Over the course of the summer children who participate have shown amazing progress in achieving developmental goals. As just one example, at the start of the program almost none of the children were able to stay with activities until they were finished, but at the end almost the entire group was able to do so.

I want to thank the many partners who made this initiative happen, including AHS, ACS, ACSS, Aspen View public schools, Athabasca county FCSS, Whispering Hills Day Care Society, and Aspen Collaborative Services.

Although we often speak of the challenges of providing services in rural areas, there are also great advantages, one of the greatest being just how interconnected everyone in smaller communities is. The groups that form the Coalition 4 Success are a perfect example of local organizations working in partnership to answer a local need, and it is a model that other communities might want to look closely at.

Thank you for your time.