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720: Teacher Staffing, Certification and Placement

Responsible Administrator: Associate Superintendent Human Resources



A major component of the school program planning process is the placement and support of continuous contract teachers and, where necessary, the recruitment/placement of new teachers.

A Division perspective on staffing is essential to ensure that staff are appropriately placed to best meet the programming needs in each school.

An effective certificated staffing process includes formalized timelines for the placement, transfer and hiring of teachers.

It may become necessary to reduce certificated staff in a particular school or across the Division. Certificated staff reduction requires a formalized process.

Certificated staff may be transferred in order to meet program requirements in Division schools and, where programs and services are maintained or enhanced and an appropriate vacancy exists, at the request of a certificated staff member.

School enrolment fluctuation, student needs and program changes may result in the need to transfer certificated staff so that program requirements in all Division schools are met. Sturgeon Public Schools recognizes that certificated staff should be advised of impending transfers as soon as possible.

Mobility is beneficial to certificated staff members, the schools, and the School Division.


Certificated Staffing

1. The Associate Superintendent, Human Resources will coordinate the annual program planning process to facilitate the placement, transfer and hiring of teachers.

2. In determining whether its ability to provide resources has been affected, the Division may consider conditions including, but not limited to, the following:

2.1 Student enrolments, both current and projected.

2.2 Financial support for education, both current and projected.

2.3 Student educational needs, both current and projected.

2.4 Changes in the function of existing physical facilities, both current and projected.

2.5 New and/or revised curriculum.

Staffing Timelines:

3. In January, the Associate Superintendent, Human Resources, will seek information from those teachers on leave of absence to determine their intentions for the subsequent school year.

4. In February, the Associate Superintendent, Human Resources will provide program planning templates to principals.

5. In February, the Associate Superintendent, Human Resources will direct a communication to teachers to determine any teacher-initiated transfer requests.

6. Principals will provide the Associate Superintendent, Human Resources with projected teacher requirements for the subsequent school year once the Resource Planning Tool (RPT) has been provided to Human Resources by the Associate Superintendent, Corporate Services and inputted in the planning templates provided as per 4. above.

7. At the beginning of March, Human Resources will request information from teachers to determine who will be resigning or retiring.

8. In mid-April, provided RPT information is available, the Associate Superintendent, Human Resources will call a meeting of principals to share teacher transfer requests and attempt to accommodate requests.

9. By the end of May, the Associate Superintendent, Human Resources will provide continuing part-time contract teachers with written tentative teaching assignment full-time equivalency (FTE) for the subsequent school year.

10. During the first week of June, available contracts will be offered to probationary or temporary contract teachers.

11. By the beginning of June, letters of regret will be sent to temporary or probationary contract teachers for whom no position is projected to be available in the subsequent school year.

12. By the end of June, advertising to fill expected teacher vacancies will begin.

13. After the May 31st resignation deadline, Human Resources will hire to fill any new vacancies caused by resignations or retirements.

14. By the beginning of June, the Associate Superintendent, Human Resources will send letters to those staff members who requested a transfer and did not receive a transfer.

Reduction in Teaching Staff:

15. Should the Division deem a reduction in the number of certificated staff be warranted, it will endeavour first to effect reduction through voluntary attrition.

15.1 Teaching staff reduction would be completed first through voluntary resignation, retirement, voluntary leave of absence and voluntary changes in employment status (i.e. full time to part time).

16. If voluntary attrition does not result in the certificated staff reduction, then the Division will endeavour to effect reduction through the transfer of staff to other available assignments.

16.1 Primary factor for determining teacher transfers will be the viability of educational programs available for students in the surplus school and in the potential receiving school. School Administration will be consulted in determining which transfers will result in the best educational programs.

17. If reduction cannot be fully achieved through voluntary attrition and/or transfer to other assignments, the Division will endeavour to effect reduction through termination of contracts of employment. The following criteria will be utilized to determine which contracts will be terminated:

17.1 Teachers on temporary contracts.

17.2 Teachers on probationary contracts.

17.3 Notwithstanding the above, teachers on temporary or probationary contracts may be retained and continuous contract teachers released if the teacher with a temporary or probationary contract possesses specialty training and/or experience. These specialty areas include, but are not limited to second languages, inclusive education, LOGOS, counselling, and Career and Technology studies.

17.4 Program considerations and the ability of the teacher to adequately handle a specific teaching assignment will be acknowledged when determining if a teacher, whose contract of employment is being considered for termination, will be reassigned to a vacant position.

17.5 With all things being equal, years of service to Sturgeon Public Schools may be considered when determining which contracts of employment are to be terminated. Years of service are counted from the date a continuous contract began and include maternity leaves, sick leaves, secondments, and educational leaves.

18. The termination of teacher contracts will be carried out with due regard to the requirements of the Education Act.

19. The Board of Trustees delegates to the Superintendent the authority to suspend and terminate the services of certificated staff.

Continuous Teaching Contracts:

The awarding of continuous teaching contracts is a long-term investment in education and requires diligence to ensure our teaching staff are of the highest quality possible.

20. At least two positive summary evaluation reports on the teacher’s performance, which have been written by a principal in accordance with the Guide to Evaluation of Certificated Staff, must be on file in Central Office.

21. The Principal must make a written recommendation to the Superintendent, or designate, to award a continuous teaching contract to the teacher. The recommendation may be part of an evaluation report on the teacher or it may be submitted in a separate formal letter.

22. In addition to the above, the Superintendent, or designate, may require additional evaluative information before considering the awarding of a continuous teaching contract.

23. Once the above requirements have been met, the teacher may be awarded a continuous teaching contract by the Superintendent, or designate, based on program needs for the Division.

Permanent Professional Certification:

24. Prior to a teacher receiving a recommendation from the Superintendent or designate of Sturgeon Public Schools for Permanent Professional Certification, the following documentation is required:

24.1 Completion of two years of full time teaching or the equivalent of two full years of teaching (the equivalent of two full years can be defined as approximately 400 days equivalent.

24.2 Two successful, formal evaluations based on the knowledge, skills and attributes for permanent certification outlined in the Teaching Quality Standards (TQS)

25. Once the required documentation in clause 24 is on file with Human Resources, an Alberta Permanent Professional Certification Recommendation Application will be completed by Human Resources through the Teacher Workforce Information System (TWINS). The teacher will complete their portion of the on-line recommendation application.

26. The recommendation will be submitted to the Superintendent or designate, Sturgeon Public Schools, for their recommendation to Alberta Education. Once signed by the superintendent, the recommendation will be forwarded to Alberta Teacher Certification Branch. 

27. The teacher will then be required to provide all supporting documents and pay the applicable fees through the Teacher Workforce Information System (TWINS).

28. If the recommendation for permanent certification is approved, the Alberta Teacher Certification Branch will provide a file copy to the teacher, who is then required to forward a copy to the recommending board. 

Certificated staff Mobility:

29. All transfers shall be made in accordance with Section 212 of the Education Act.

30. Transfers will only normally be considered when they are to be effective at the beginning of the school year. Applications arising out of emergency situations may be considered at any time.

31. Certificated staff-initiated applications for transfer, will be directed to the Superintendent or designate before March 01 of the calendar year in which they will take effect.

32. Principal recommendations for transfers are to be directed in writing to the Superintendent or designate before March 01 of the calendar year in which the transfer is to take effect. The transfer recommendation letter shall include the following:

32.1 Name of the certificated staff member to be transferred.

32.2 The requested effective date of the transfer.

33. The Principal shall discuss the recommendation with the certificated staff member and provide a copy of the transfer recommendation letter to the certificated staff member.

34. A central administrator’s recommendation for a certificated staff member transfer may be directed at any time in writing to the Superintendent or designate and shall include the:

34.1 Name of the certificated staff member to be transferred.

34.2 The requested effective date of the transfer.

35. The administrator making the recommendation for the transfer shall discuss the recommendation with the certificated staff member and provide a copy of the transfer recommendation letter to the certificated staff member.

36. All transfer requests made by either the employee or the principal will be discussed during the program planning session.

37. The Superintendent may transfer a teacher in accordance with Section 212 of the Education Act. The teacher may make a written request to the Board to have a hearing before the Board for the purpose of objecting to the transfer. (Appendix A)

38. Certificated staff wishing to apply for a one-year exchange of service will direct their application to the Superintendent or designate before March 01 of the school year prior to the school year for which they are applying.

38.1 Certificated staff members involved in an exchange of service must maintain their contract status.

38.2 Applications may indicate schools of preference, and colleagues interested in engaging in an exchange.

38.3 Each certificated staff member interested must apply separately.

38.4 The Superintendent or designate will consult with the principals involved.

38.5 If all parties, staff members and principals agree to the exchange, and such a change is approved by the Superintendent or designate, Human Resources personnel will make the necessary arrangements and provide a written record of the arrangements to all involved.

38.6 Subject to the terms of this section of this Admin Procedure, certificated staff will return to their school of origin for the following school year, unless all parties agree to an extension for one additional year or a permanent transfer of the staff. An exchange of service shall not be longer than a two(2) year period.



Board Policy: 700 Superintendent of Schools
Admin Procedure: 700 –Hiring –Certificated Staff
Education Act: Section 212
ATA Collective Agreement
Guide to Evaluation of Certificated Staff
Alberta Teacher Certification
Appendix A: Hearings on Teacher Transfers


2020 Jan 29 Initial Approval
2021 Jan 13 Amended
2023 Jan 25 Amended