AP 160: Political Electioneering
Administration of Policy and Legislation
The political election process in Alberta and Canada normally occurs every three to five (3 to 5) years. Because schools hold a communication avenue to a wide adult audience, schools are sometimes subject to solicitations from aspiring politicians who wish to send materials home through the schools.
1. Campaigning in Division schools by individual candidates or parties for municipal, school board, provincial or federal elections shall be considered to be prohibited, with the following exceptions:
1.1. Schools may organize all-candidate forums for educational purposes;
1.2. School space may be rented after hours by a candidate or party on a commercial use basis; and
1.3. Political candidates and/or their representatives may speak to classes, groups, or assemblies, preferably during non-school hours, provided the attendance is by invitation and is voluntary, and provided all parties are given equal opportunity.
2. The posting or distribution of campaign materials associated with elections on lands or within buildings owned by the Division shall be considered to be prohibited, with the following exceptions:
2.1. Election materials posted and distributed in that portion of a school rented for a campaign meeting or being used for an all-candidates forum;
2.1.1. All political materials shall be removed from school premises at the end of any such meeting;
2.2. Those election materials used as classroom teaching resources on the condition that support for an individual candidate or political party is not solicited; and
2.3. Those election materials posted regarding school board elections as directed by the Board.
3. Notwithstanding exceptions defined in this procedure, political campaign materials and political literature in general shall not be distributed through the school or sent home to parents.
4. Political candidates and/or their representatives shall not have access, during school hours, to school classes or assemblies on behalf of their candidacy or on behalf of their party/constituency for the purpose of solicitation of support.
5. The School Council Chair may invite candidates for the position of trustee to participate in an information session at a School Council meeting.
5.1. In all cases, the School Council Chair must provide fair and equitable treatment to all candidates.
5.1.1. The Alberta School Councils Association has produced reference material in this regard.
6. The Principal shall report to the Associate Superintendent, Corporate Supports and Services any unusual circumstances that may originate from political electioneering.
7. The Associate Superintendent, Corporate Supports and Services may be requested to rule on extraordinary requests within the parameters of this administrative procedure.
7.1. Any such occurrence will be reported to the Board as information.