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CMEC Joint Ministerial Declaration – Learn Canada 2020

by NationTalk on April 15, 2008854 Views

April 15, 2008


Learn Canada 2020


Learn Canada 2020 is the framework the provincial and territorial ministers of education, through the Council of Ministers of Education, Canada, will use to enhance Canada’s education systems, learning opportunities, and overall education outcomes. The vision of Learn Canada 2020 is Quality Lifelong Learning Opportunities for All Canadians.

Learn Canada 2020 recognizes the direct link between a well-educated population and (1) a vibrant knowledge-based economy in the 21st Century, (2) a socially progressive, sustainable society, and (3) enhanced personal growth opportunities for all Canadians.FOUR PILLARS OF LIFELONG LEARNING

Learn Canada 2020 encompasses the four pillars of lifelong learning from early childhood to adulthood and addresses the most pressing education and learning issues facing Canadians today. The ministers of education, in conjunction with their Cabinet colleagues as appropriate, will pursue the ambitious goals for each pillar as follows:

Early Childhood Learning and Development
All children should have access to high quality early childhood education that ensures they arrive at school ready to learn.

Elementary to High School Systems
All children in our elementary to high school systems deserve teaching and learning opportunities that are inclusive and that provide them with world-class skills in literacy, numeracy, and science.

Postsecondary Education
Canada must increase the number of students pursuing postsecondary education by increasing the quality and accessibility of postsecondary education.

Adult Learning and Skills Development
Canada must develop an accessible, diversified, and integrated system of adult learning and skills development that delivers training when Canadians need it.

Within the four pillars of lifelong learning, ministers have identified eight specific activity areas and accompanying objectives:

Literacy: Raise the literacy levels of Canadians.

Aboriginal Education: Eliminate the gap in academic achievement and graduation rates between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal students.

Postsecondary Capacity: Enhance and stabilize the long-term capacity of postsecondary systems to meet the training and learning needs of all Canadians seeking higher education learning opportunities.

Education for Sustainable Development: Raise students’ awareness and encourage them to become actively engaged in working for a sustainable society.

International and National Representation: Speak effectively and consistently for education and learning in Canada in both pan-Canadian and international settings.

Official Languages: Promote and implement support programs for minority-language education and second-language programs that are among the most comprehensive in the world.

Learning Assessment Programs and Performance Indicators: Support the implementation of national and international learning assessment programs and performance indicators for education systems.

Education Data and Research Strategy: Create comprehensive, long-term strategies to collect, analyze, and disseminate nationally and internationally comparable data and research.


Learn Canada 2020 reflects the educational priorities of Canadians. Ministers will engage key partners and stakeholders in reaching the stated goals and objectives.

Education in Canada is under the exclusive jurisdiction of provinces and territories. Ministers recognize the national interest in ensuring a healthy economy and the importance of education for economic development. To this end, Canada’s education ministers will engage all those who can and must participate in meeting these goals — parents, educators, key stakeholders, and other orders of government. We will encourage the federal government to meet its constitutional obligation and work with provinces and territories to provide equality of opportunity for Aboriginal peoples.


Ministers will keep the public advised of Canada’s progress on Learn Canada 2020 by reporting on an annual basis.


Ministers will pursue the goals of Learn Canada 2020 through their Council of Ministers of Education, Canada (CMEC). CMEC has an enviable track record of having represented the education and learning interests of Canadians both domestically and internationally for over four decades.

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