Education and School Records

From the early days of settlement until the1960s there were thousands of school districts in the province, the majority of them rural.  Over time, these school districts were amalgamated into new administrative structures (school divisions, school units), the size of which fluctuate over time.  Records about the creation and maintenance of these schools, and about the education of Saskatchewan citizens, are acquired by the Provincial Archives from the Ministry of Education, and are also acquired directly from former school districts, school divisions and school units.

Legislation and Records Retention Guides stipulate that records are to be retained by the school division office in the region where they were created, and some are to be transferred to the Provincial Archives once they have been kept for the required time.  However, in some cases, records from old school districts were kept by the last secretary-treasurer when the school closed; these records are occasionally acquired from private sources.

Education and school records document the establishment, maintenance, closure and re-organization of school districts/divisions/units, as well as the history of schools and divisions over time.  Records that come from school divisions often include school building/yard blueprints and drawings, teacher contracts/agreements, board and trustee reports, debenture certificates, and budget information.

Access to records created by the school divisions and their predecessors is governed by The Local Authority Freedom of Information and Privacy Act.

The Provincial Archives has files created by the old Department of Education for each school district established in Saskatchewan.   While these files do not contain the names of pupils, they frequently include information concerning the activities leading up to the school district's formation such as the original petition and the names and residences of the first ratepayers. School officials forms, which include the names of the trustees and other officials, some annual reports, and a few superintendents' reports are found in most of the files.

Also included in the Department of Education records are inactive Teachers Register Sheets, 1912-1938, which show the date, place of birth, and the educational qualifications of the teachers listed. 

Access to ministry or department records is governed by The Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. As a general rule this means that access to government records are restricted for 25 years in the case of administrative and policy records, and longer in the case of records containing personal or health care information.

For more information about accessing restricted records, please click here.

To access education and school records, begin your search in our online catalogue.  However, as not all of our Collection is described in the catalogue as of yet, you are also advised to contact Reference and Outreach Services.

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