Our Commitment to Education

Since being elected to govern Nova Scotia in 2013, our Liberal government has expanded spending on Education by about 30%.

This new funding has allowed us to put new resources into the classroom. We have added over 900 new teachers and added new non-teaching positions to improve education for the kids by lowering the size of classes.

Our Liberal Government has done all of these things while balancing the provincial budget!

Click here to read more about our investment in Education

Budget investments in safe and connected communities

Did you know the 2018 Provincial Budget includes the following provisions?

Budget investments in safe and connected communities include:

$16.2 million increase in Disability Support program to help more people move out of institutions, to improve respite care, and to fund more complex client cases
$2.1 million to help create eight small options homes and two community options homes
$3 million to double poverty reduction credit to $500
$4 million for initiatives under the Blueprint to End Poverty as part of a four-year, $20-million commitment
$3.4 million to fully exempt child-support payments from income assistance calculations
$2 million to help prevent domestic violence, the first year of a four-year commitment
$12.4 million more to improve public housing buildings
$3 million to offer 400 more rent supplements to low income Nova Scotians
$60 million more for a total of $285 million in capital spending on highways, bridges, and roads, which includes $10 million more to improve gravel roads for total of $20 million
Work on three significant twinning projects and four new interchanges on 100-series highways as part of a multi-year plan
$2.4 million more to expand and support community transportation under SHIFT for older Nova Scotians

A Great Community Initiative

Earlier this month, MLAs Ben Jessome and Brendan Maguire teamed up with Sportwheels Sports Excellence in Lower Sackville to run a hockey equipment drive. They’re collecting new and lightly-used hockey equipment to help low-income youth in their communities get in the game.

Read the full story here   and let’s give some thought to how we might do the same sort of thing here in Dartmouth North in the future.

Nova Scotia Investing in Teaching Coding in Schools

Nova Scotia students from Grades Primary to 12 will develop critical skills using new technology to support their learning and to prepare them for new economy jobs.

As part of Budget 2016-2017, the province is investing $1 million to support coding in schools this year. As part of Nova Scotia’s Action Plan for Education, coding promotes problem solving, teamwork, critical thinking and innovation. These skills are directly linked to many of the growth industries in Nova Scotia, including computer programming, marine, manufacturing and communications.

“This investment in students in all grade levels will provide hands-on learning activities that will develop technology skills and provide students with the basics of coding, technology and design,” Education and Early Childhood Development Minister Karen Casey said today, May 6, at a demonstration event. “We want to ensure our young people have the skills they need to be successful in a digital workforce.”
Students in Grades Primary to 3 were introduced to computing this year as part of the revised Information and Communication Technology curriculum. In the fall, programmable floor robots will be introduced to P-3 classrooms in every elementary school across the province to teach sequencing and programming to younger children.

Starting in September students in Grades 4 to 6 will learn more about coding and will develop skills in problem solving, critical thinking, resiliency, creativity, and innovation as part of a renewed curriculum. Every elementary school in Nova Scotia will receive innovation and exploration kits, including leading-edge technology and support devices such as iPads, Chromebooks, Sphero SPRK robots, Makey Makey invention kits and PASCO wireless probes and software.

Students in Grades 7 to 12 will have enhanced learning opportunities for coding through events like the Hour of Code, STEAM Olympics (Science, Technology, Engineering, Entrepreneurship, Art, and Mathematics) and partnerships with organizations like Brilliant Labs and Acadia Robotics. All high school students have access this year to Computer Programming 12 through the Nova Scotia Virtual School.

The 2016-2017 investment also includes professional development for teachers in May and June. Training will continue at the IT Summer Camp for Teachers as part of the Summer Learning Academy.
Ms. Casey said Nova Scotia is leading the way in its approach to coding both at the curriculum level and in terms of student success. She congratulated the Royal Robots team from Annapolis West Education Centre who won the First Lego League championship for students aged nine to 14 years. The second-place team, based out of the Colchester-East Hants Public Library, is competing in the North American Open in Fayetteville, Arkansas, later this month.
Ms. Casey also congratulated Horton High School for winning first place in the Robofest category at the Acadia Robotics competition held in February. The team will head to Southfield, Michigan next week, along with the second-place team from Digby Regional High School, to represent Nova Scotia at the Robofest World Championship.

An award-winning, online video about coding in Nova Scotia schools is at https://hourofcode.com/ca/promote/country-resources .

Nova Scotia’s Action Plan for Education can be found at http://www.ednet.ns.ca/ .


The province is co-ordinating several ways for Nova Scotians to help victims of the fire emergency in Fort McMurray, Alberta.
“The images and stories coming from Fort McMurray are frightening, especially to the many Nova Scotians who have family members in Alberta,” said Premier Stephen McNeil. “People across our province are concerned about the thousands who had to evacuate and Nova Scotians want to help.”
Beginning today, May 5, Nova Scotians in Alberta who have been displaced by wildfires can phone 1-855-466-4994 to get connected to government programs that may provide assistance or to help connect people with family in Nova Scotia. This service, provided by 211, will help co-ordinate support and provide assistance.
Here at home, Nova Scotians with family members in Alberta who need assistance can also phone 211 to get connected to programs and services that may help.
Nova Scotians who wish to help are encouraged to donate to the Canadian Red Cross. They are accepting donations via phone, text message or online at www.redcross.ca .
Information is available at NovaScotia.ca/FortMcMurray .
“Nova Scotians have always stepped up when others are in need,” said Premier McNeil. “Nova Scotians with family members affected should use these sources to let us know how we can help.”
The province is also ready to provide firefighting and other resources to Alberta if requested.