HalifaxThe fog is starting to clear in Nova Scotia as new information has been released about school performance, unfortunately not consistently across the province and not in time for this year’s high school report card.


AIMS’ 5th Annual Report Card (RC5) for Atlantic Canadian High Schools is able to provide a more accurate picture of high school education in Nova Scotia thanks to access to postal code data provided by the provincial Department of Education. Several school boards on the other hand, despite being told to release relevant provincial exam results or comparable teacher assigned grades, have been unable to do so prior to the release of this year’s report card.


“Halifax, Annapolis Valley and Tri-County Regional School Boards couldn’t supply us the results of provincial exams or comparable teacher assigned grades prior to publication of the report card,” said report co-author and AIMS acting president Charles Cirtwill. “Halifax and Annapolis Valley indicated they do not feel this data is useful or relevant in their evaluations of schools which is very worrisome considering it is used across Atlantic Canada as a key indicator.”


Basic measures that are currently accessible in other Atlantic Canadian jurisdictions, but not in Nova Scotia include: complete standardized test results, comparable teacher-assigned grades as well as attendance and discipline statistics. Without this information no one – not parents, teachers, students or policymakers – can really know what is going on in the province’s schools. But the report card remains the single most comprehensive source for information about our schools.


In this year’s analysis there was a significant development at the top of the chart with Islands Consolidated of Freeport, the top ranked school in Nova Scotia for the last four years, falling from first to second place. Their grade slipped from an A to a B+ leaving top spot for Queen Elizabeth High School with their B+. Another notable accomplishment was the top ten ranking of three schools from the Strait Regional School Board. Lunenburg Junior-Senior High School should be pleased with their jump from a D to a C+.


Once again no school in Nova Scotia earns a failing grade but three schools earn D grades. They are: Hants North Rural High School, Lockeport Regional High School and River Hebert District High School. No school in the province managed an A and the top school in Atlantic Canada was a full grade ahead of Queen Elizabeth High School.


However, AIMS urges all stakeholders to look beyond the overall rankings and consider the performance of each school on all available measures. Individual report cards were mailed to every high school, parent-teacher association, student council and school board in the region to help them assess how their schools are doing.


Grades are based on a three-year rolling average. If a school does not have at least two years of data for a particular measure, it will not receive a grade for that measure. RC5 is based on data from the school years 2002-03, 2003-04, and 2004-05.


AIMS also provides an on-line report card on its website (www.aims.ca) which provides parents, students teachers and anyone else interested the opportunity to do some in-depth review of a school’s results.


“Last year our on-line report card received over a quarter of a million hits on the first day it was posted. That amount of traffic to our website proves that people are interested in this report card and want to know how it can be used to improve our public schools,” says Cirtwill. “Ultimately we hope the information will be used to push for reform and improvements for our students.”


The Report Card is published annually in Progress business magazine and a complete copy can be found as a centre insert in this month’s issue. This is the fifth year the magazine has dedicated an edition to the AIMS’ Report Card.


For complete Nova Scotia results, click here




For more information, contact:


Charles Cirtwill, AIMS (acting) president



Barbara Pike, AIMS Director of Communications

902-29-1143 ext 227 – o  / 902-452-1172 – cell