AP 470: Reduction Of Staff

Personnel & Employment


The Superintendent has a mandate to provide quality education services to students enrolled in schools and programs operated by the Division within a fiscally responsible framework. A variety of factors may necessitate the reduction of staff in a particular school, department, program, geographic region, or in the Division as a whole.

The Superintendent recognizes that changes in any employment factors may have a negative impact on the ability of the Division to fulfill its educational goals within the limit of its financial resources. Should the Superintendent be of the opinion that any of these factors warrant a reduction in the number of professional staff positions, this administrative procedure may be applied, at the Superintendent’s discretion, to a particular school, geographic area, or the Division as a whole.


With respect to the reduction of Professional Staff:

1. In determining whether there is an adequate ability to provide educational services, the Superintendent shall determine the need for reduction based on the following factors:

1.1. Student enrollments, both current and projected; including

1.1.1. A Principal’s recommendation to reduce surplus teachers based on enrollments;

1.2.  Population patterns;

1.3.  Financial support for education, both current and projected;

1.4.  Funding from all sources;

1.5.  Student educational needs, both current and projected;

1.6.  Programs offered by the Division;

1.7.  Changes in function to existing facilities, both current and projected;

1.8.  New and/or revised curricula; and

1.9.  Curricular content or practices that may or may not be required by the current configuration of staff based on need or demand.

2. The Superintendent may consider the following with respect to staff reduction:

2.1.  The retention of staff members who best meet the program requirements in the school and the educational needs of the students;

2.2.  The possibility of reduction through voluntary attrition, including amongst other things:

2.2.1.  Voluntary resignation;

2.2.2.  Retirement;

2.2.3.  Voluntary leave of absence;

2.2.4.  Voluntary changes in employment status (i.e. full time to part time); and

2.2.5.  Voluntary transfer.

3. The Superintendent may reduce staff through the transfer of staff to other appropriate assignments and shall make the final determination regarding any required transfers, considering:

3.1. Student and program needs, not employee seniority, shall be the primary criteria for enacting teacher transfers; however:

3.1.1. When program requirements and student needs can be equally well met by more than one (1) teacher in a particular school, seniority shall be the determining factor when making final decisions regarding the transfer of teachers;

3.2.  The recommendations of the Principal regarding the staffing needs for the school, including the number of surplus positions;

3.3.  The retention of staff members who best meet the program requirements of the school and the education needs of the students as provided for based on school administration recommendations; and

3.4.  Adherence to the provisions within the current collective agreement between the Board and the Alberta Teachers’ Association.

4. The transfer of teachers may be appealed in accordance with the Education Act.

5. The Superintendent may vary the amount of time that a teacher under a part-time contractof employment teaches, in a subsequent semester or school year based upon the program requirements of the school and the educational needs of the students, unless otherwise prohibited by contract.

6. If sufficient staff reduction cannot be fully achieved through voluntary attrition, transfer to other assignments or reduction in part-time teaching contracts, the Superintendent shall reduce staff through termination of contracts of employment. The following criteria may be utilized to determine which contracts of employment will be terminated:

6.1. Seniority based on years of service with the Division shall be the primary consideration when determining which contracts of employment are to be terminated. To determine years of seniority, the following will be used:

6.1.1.  Seniority will be determined from the original date of hire to the date of application of the procedure, provided there has been no break in service, other than as described in these procedures;

6.1.2.  Maternity leaves, medical leaves, and educational leaves shall be included as years of service with the Division;

6.1.3.  Leaves for personal reasons of a duration of thirty (30) calendar days or longer shall not be counted for determining years of service;

6.1.4.  Length of service shall be calculated based upon the number of years and full months of service provided to the Division; and

6.1.5.  Employees who are on part-time continuous contracts shall be treated in the same manner as employees who are on full-time contracts.

6.2.  The Superintendent shall determine whether a seniority list will be used for a particular school(s), department, program, geographic area, or the Division as a whole.

6.3.  Teachers on temporary contracts of employment will be the first to be released.

6.4.  Teachers on probationary or interim contracts will be the next to be released.

7. Notwithstanding the above, teachers on temporary, probationary or interim contracts may be retained and continuous contract teachers released if the teacher holds a “specialized teaching assignment”. Examples of specialized teaching assignments include such things as: second languages, special education, specialized career and technology studies programs, fine arts and high school mathematics and science courses. It may be necessary to retain teachers on temporary and probationary contracts in order to maintain these programs.

8. Teachers on leaves of absence for any reason will not be exempt from the application of this administrative procedure.

9. The Superintendent has the responsibility for applying these criteria and for recommending to the Board those contracts of employment that are to be terminated.

10. Where required, recommendations for termination of continuous contracts of employment shall be made by the Superintendent to the Board after informing the teacher in writing of:

10.1.  The recommendation for termination of the teacher’s contract of employment;

10.2.  The reasons for termination;

10.3.  The date, time, and location of the Board meeting at which the Board will consider the recommendation; and

10.4.  The teacher’s right to attend the Board meeting and be represented by a member of the ATA or legal counsel, or both, and to make representations to the Board in person or through his or her representative, or both.

11. Any notice of termination shall be given in accordance with the requirements of the Education Act.

12. With respect to Unionized Support Staff, should the Superintendent conclude that a reduction in union personnel is required, the Superintendent will reduce staff in accordance with the provision of the applicable Collective Agreement, program needs, and consideration of the educational needs of the students.

13. With respect to Non-Union Support Staff, should the Superintendent conclude that a reduction in non-union personnel is required, the Superintendent will reduce staff in accordance with the provisions of the Employment Standards Code, program needs, and consideration of the educational needs of the students.




Date Approved: October 8, 2019

Reference:Education Act: 52-53, 204-211, 222, 232
Employment Standards Code
Labour Relations Code
Collective Agreements

Reviewed or Revised:
Executive: January, 2021

References shall be updated as required and do not require additional approval.