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Learning Services

Sturgeon Public Schools embraces the uniqueness of all children, each bringing diversity and strength to our school culture. Because of this belief, we work to include and support students with diverse learning needs in their home, schools, and communities.

In Sturgeon Public Schools, our Learning Services department is dedicated to providing comprehensive support tailored to meet the diverse needs of every student. Our range of services includes therapeutic services such as Speech-Language Pathology, Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy, and Psychology. Additionally, we offer contracted support in areas such as Registered Nursing, Deaf & Hard of Hearing, and Low Vision.

Our dedicated team is committed to creating an inclusive environment where all learners and staff members have the resources they need to thrive. Whether it's enhancing communication skills, implementing specialized educational strategies, or providing behavioural support, our goal is to empower both students and educators. To ensure a collaborative approach to effectively supporting students, we offer staff coaching for Educational Assistants, Inclusive Programming and Behaviour.

Furthermore, Learning Services extends support to families through access to Social Work, S.H.I.N.E, HYPE, and Mindful Mentors. We strive to provide comprehensive support for the holistic development and success of every individual within our school community.


Specialized Programming

Specialized Programming supports students facing complex learning challenges, particularly those associated with significant cognitive delays. The goal of Specialized Programming is meaningful inclusion, access to learning,  independence, building relationships and creating opportunities for strategic and explicit instruction. Students can access Specialized Programming in any school in our division.

Specialized Programming ensures all students are an active part of our school community. This programming allows students to move across learning environments in order to enrich their experiences and increase opportunities.   Students have the opportunity to participate in learning opportunities within a whole school community, small group targeted interventions and access small class sizes with high levels of support when required. All of these environments create learning opportunities that are meaningful and relevant to each student’s abilities, interests and needs. 

This programming is supported by Teachers, Educational Assistants, SPS Learning Services Team and other contract services, to ensure student programming is meeting the explicit needs of the student.

Knowledge and Employability (K&E)

Alberta school authorities are responsible for ensuring that students are enrolled in courses appropriate to their highest level of academic achievement. Sturgeon Public Schools is committed to supporting all learners and recognizes the need for students to have alternative opportunities to continue their education. As such, several different courses are available to meet the individual learning needs and goals of students. The Knowledge and Employability (K&E) courses are designed for students who meet the criteria and learn best through experiences that integrate essential learning with employability skills in occupational contexts.

Program Unit Funding (PUF)

Program Unit Funding  (PUF) focuses on developing extensive early childhood readiness skills. It is designed for children aged between 2 years, 8 months and 4 years, 7 months as of September 1st of the school year who have a diagnosed need in one or more areas.

The program focuses on developing communication, social, physical and emotional skills. Specific programming is tailored to the individual needs of the child.

PUF students are fully included in local Pre-Kindergarten Programs

The following schools offer the PUF program:

For more information, please contact Learning Services at 780-939-4341 ext. 1257.

SHINE Beyond Limits

At SHINE Beyond Limits, we believe in more than just providing services; we aim to build lasting relationships. As your home-based Family Support for Children with Disabilities (FSCD) service provider, we bridge the gap between you and the resources you need, delivering personalized, family-centered support right to your doorstep.

For more information, please visit our website at


CASA Classrooms

For the 2024/25 school year, our classrooms will support students in Grades 7-9 at Guthrie School and Grades 10-12 will continue at Sturgeon Composite High School.

CASA is focused on implementing programs that meet needs of the “missing middle” within the spectrum of mental health care.


What is the “missing middle”?

The stepped care model (Mental Health Commission  of Canada, 2022), identifies that level 1 & 2 services of prevention, promotion and early  intervention/treatment are best suited to be delivered by primary care and community programs, while  level 5 & 6 intensive, complex specialty care services are best delivered within a hospital or secure care  facility. CASA Classrooms are targeted to treat and support those children and adolescents requiring  level 3 to 5, higher intensity treatment, and safe to receive care within a community school.

CASA has partnered with school divisions to deliver intensive clinical interventions and individualized  programming within the local classroom setting. Children and adolescents will receive onsite treatment and supports from health care professionals including mental health therapists, behavioural specialists, access to psychiatrists, nurses and social workers. 

Sturgeon Public School Division is excited to continue our collaboration with CASA Mental Health providing our rural students and families with access to mental health supports in our schools.

Background: In partnership with the Government of Alberta, community partners and school divisions, CASA Mental Health has committed to delivering mental health care in classrooms. CASA Classrooms address the need for services closer to students by bridging a child’s mental health and school needs.

Mental Health & Wellness

We understand the importance of mental health and offer resources to support our school community:

  • Counselling/Student Services: We prioritize providing comprehensive counseling and student services that address the diverse educational, personal, emotional, and social needs of our students. We believe in fostering a continuum of support that involves collaboration among school teachers, counselors, and other staff, as well as parents/guardians. Our teacher-counselors play a central role in this continuum, offering guidance, counseling, and support to students within the school setting.
    • Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) Initiatives: Our division prioritizes essential life skills like empathy and self-awareness through SEL programs integrated into our curriculum and activities.
    • Bullying Prevention: We actively promote a safe, inclusive environment through education, awareness campaigns, and proactive intervention strategies to prevent and address bullying incidents promptly.
    • Positive Relationships: Fostering positive connections among students, staff, and families is central to our approach. Through engagement initiatives and mentorship programs, we cultivate a sense of belonging and support for all members of our school community.
  • Psychological Support: Our dedicated school psychologist conducts assessments, and offers consultations to educators, parents, and administrators to ensure a supportive environment for all students.
  • Crisis Response Teams: Our trained staff are equipped to respond swiftly and effectively to mental health crises within our school community, including suicide prevention and intervention.
  • Accessible Mental Health Resources: We ensure students and families have access to information about local mental health resources, hotlines, and online support services, facilitating connections to additional support as needed.

Important Numbers:

  • Distress Line (Edmonton and area): (780) 482-4357
  • Alberta Mental Health Help Line: 1 (877) 303-2642
  • First Nations and Inuit Hope for Wellness Help Line: 1 (855) 242-3310
  • Kids Help Phone: 1 (800) 668-6868 or text: 686868
  • Children’s Mental Health Crisis: 780-407-1000
  • Mental Health Intake Services: 825-402-6799

Violence and Threat Risk Assessment - VTRA

Sturgeon Public Schools is committed to providing safe and caring learning environments for all students, staff, school visitors and community members. To this end, we have invested in the professional certification of administrative staff in Level 1 & Level 2 Violence and Threat Risk Assessment training across the Division. VTRA helps schools respond quickly to incidents where students' behaviours pose a potential threat to safety or serious harm.

In the communities we are privileged to serve, we have signed off on formalized community-based VTRA protocols with regional partners such as neighbouring school jurisdictions, the RCMP, Alberta Health Services and other community agencies.

VTRA Letter of Fair Notice

VTRA Brochure

Therapeutic Crisis Intervention In Schools - TCIS

Sturgeon Public Schools follows the philosophies of Therapeutic Crisis Intervention In Schools (TCIS). TCIS equips educators with essential tools to effectively manage crises and support students' emotional well-being within the school environment. Rooted in evidence-based practices and compassionate care, TCIS provides educators with comprehensive training and knowledge in crisis prevention, intervention, and de-escalation techniques. TCIS emphasizes proactive strategies to create safe, nurturing learning environments where students can thrive academically and emotionally. By fostering strong relationships and promoting positive behavior, TCIS empowers educators to respond confidently to challenging situations while promoting resilience and growth in students.