Saddle Lake Education is no longer busy Kindergarten to Grade 3 students off-reserve

With a new elementary school nearing completion, the Saddle Lake Education Authority has decided it will no longer be busy kindergarten to Grade 3 students to schools outside the Saddle Lake community, and instead encourage “Nation members to attend our Nation’s schools.”

st. PAUL – With a new elementary school nearing completion in the community, the Saddle Lake Education Authority has decided it will no longer be busy kindergarten to Grade 3 students off-reserve.

The decision, according to St. Paul Education Superintendent Peter Barron, will likely have effects when it comes to staffing and student population at some of the St. Paul Education schools in the area. Ashmont School will likely see some staffing implications, said Barron, during the May 10 school board meeting, where information is also presented to the board from the Saddle Lake Education Authority.

No discussion about the topic took place between board trustees during the May board meeting.

According to the information, which was also provided to Lakeland This Week by Debra Cardinal, Superintendent of Schools with Saddle Lake Education Authority, for the upcoming 2023-24 school year, and “in anticipation of our newly built elementary school, the Saddle Lake Education Authority is making plans to encourage and support our Nation members to access our Nation’s schools.”

Effective June 30, 2023, busing for kindergarten to Grade 3 students will no longer be provided to off-reserve schools.

“To serve children who currently live in St. Paul and want to enroll in our schools, a bus from St. Paul for this purpose will be provided starting in the new school year,” reads the information.

Student transportation to off-reserve schools will be phased out over the next three years. For the 2024-25 school year, Grade 4 to 6 students will no longer be bused off-reserve, and in 2025-26, Grade 7 to 9 students will no longer be bused off-reserve.

“Our children deserve to learn in nehiyawewin and nehiyawiwin as these are best supported through our own efforts as a nation working together. Support services for children who require specialized learning services will be met through wrapping around opportunities that are to be built into our existing infrastructure and programming,” reads the information from Saddle Lake Education Authority.

The Saddle Lake education office can be reached at (780) 726-7609.

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