Home / Features / New B.C. Graduation Program and Grades 11 and 12 curriculumhelping all students succeed
New B.C. Graduation Program and Grades 11 and 12 curriculumhelping all students succeed

New B.C. Graduation Program and Grades 11 and 12 curriculumhelping all students succeed

By Rob Fleming

Minister of Education


British Columbian students are graduating into a rapidly changing world. From the careers they choose to pursue, to the number of different jobs they’ll hold over the course of their lifetime, their ability to adapt and thrive will ultimately prove key to their success.

We’re making important changes to B.C.’s K-12 education system to ensure all students graduate with the skills and competencies they need to be successful in college, university, and the workplaces of tomorrow.Starting this September, secondary school students will benefit from a modernized B.C. Graduation Program, along with an innovative and flexible new Grade 11 and 12 curriculum, designed to help all students excel in whatever post-graduation path they embark on.

B.C. students will continue to graduate with key foundational skills like reading, writing and math. They’ll also be taught to embrace technology and build a range of other skills that employers and post-secondary institutions are looking for – creative, analytical, entrepreneurial and leadership included.

The ministry’s K-12 curriculum redesign will be completed in September with the implementation of grades 11 and 12. The new K-9 curriculum was introduced in September 2016, followed by Grade 10 in September 2018.The personalized and hands-on nature of the new K-12 curriculum is helping kids feel more connected and engaged with what they’re learning so they have a better chance of success. It’s also helping build their collaboration, critical thinking and communication skills.

Starting in the fall, students will be given more choice as 200 new courses will be offered to those in grades 11 and 12 in a range of subjects, including environmental science, web development, digital media, engineering and robotics.

For the first time, the new K-12 curriculum ensures Indigenous knowledge and perspectives are woven across all grades and areas of learning. Education is a key part of reconciliation and we know it’s crucial for Indigenous knowledge and history to be taught in the classroom for the benefit of all students.

Another important change is that we are introducing three new rigorous graduation assessments, numeracy in Grade 10, and literacy in grades 10 and 12, that align with our innovative new curriculum and maintain the high standards that B.C.’s K-12 education system has earned a world-class reputation for.The new assessments will evaluate whetherstudents have the skills they need for the jobs of the future, and will offer parents important insight into their child’s readiness for post-secondary studies.

Two new career education coursesare also being introduced, giving students an opportunity to explore career pathways, and develop the skills needed to manage their career and life transitions.The Career-Life Education course will offer students an opportunity to explore their potential future roles. They’ll examine ways topublicly represent themselves, practice inclusive and respectful interactions, connect and engage with their community, and research post-graduation options.

The second course, Career-Life Connections,will give students an opportunity to apply their career-focused learning to post-graduation planning and career development. It includes 30 hours of experiential learning, as well as a capstone project, which will see students put together a project and give a presentation to a related audience. For example, students interested in taking a trades program might create a product, and then present their learning to someone from the local business community.

Our government is continuing to work closely with educators, post-secondary institutions and employers as the new B.C. Graduation Program and assessments come into effect because we want to make sure all students successfully transition into the next phase of their lives.

Under the guidance of this program and their dedicated teachers and school leaders, all B.C. students will have the opportunity to explore where they want to go in life and be supported to build bright futures for themselves and their families for generations to come.

Starting in September 2019, a new B.C. Graduation Program, and Grades 11 and 12 curriculum will be in effect.

What’s changing?

  • Increased course options (200+) will provide greater choice for students.
  • Two new career education courses will be introduced (eight credits).
  • For the first time, Indigenous knowledge and perspectives are woven across all grades and areas of learning.
  • Three new mandatory graduation assessments maintaining B.C.’s high and measurable standards will be introduced:
    • Numeracy in Grade 10 (implemented in the 2017/18 school year);
    • Literacy in Grade 10 (implemented in the 2019/20 school year); and,
    • Literacy in Grade 12 (implemented in January 2021).
  • Discontinuation of Provincial Language Arts 12 (course-based) exams, and Communications 11/12 courses at the end of the 2018/19 school year.

What’s staying the same?

  • At least 80 credits will be required for graduation.
  • High standards focused on foundational skills, including reading, writing and math.
  • Students will receive report cards with letter grades and percentages for all courses in grades 10-12.
  • Provincial assessments will measure student and system performance.

 Learn more:

To learn more about the new curriculum, visit: www.curriculum.gov.bc.ca

The new B.C. Graduation Program Policy Guide, the B.C. Graduation Program Implementation Guide and A Parent’s Guide to the B.C. Graduation Program (Grades 10-12) are all available online: www.gov.bc.ca/education/graduation

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