Policies, Regulations Forms and Bylaws

1115-10 | Board Authority Authorized Courses

Date Approved: September 11 2012
Date Reviewed/Amended:

Formerly: Locally Developed Courses

1.0 Definition:

1.1 “Board Authorized Courses (BAA) courses” are offered to respond to the unique local needs of the schools and their communities while providing choice and flexibility for students.  These courses demonstrate planning, organization and sound    pedagogy.  BAA courses are authorized according to requirements set by the Ministry of Education.

2.0 Courses Eligible for Board/Authority Authorization:

2.1 BAA courses may be used as all or part of the elective credits students need to fulfill graduation requirements. 

2.2 In response to local needs and students interests the Board may authorize a broad variety of BAA courses focused on subject areas not offered through Ministry-developed courses. 

2.3 The Board may design ESL courses whose primary language is not Standard English and who may therefore require English as a second (or additional) language support so they may successfully access the BC curriculum.  These courses should not be remedial or modified versions of Ministry-authorized courses.

2.4 Grade 11 level BAA courses may be used to fulfill the Fine Arts/Applied Skills graduation requirement if they meet the outcomes of the Ministry-developed Grade 11 Fine Arts or Applied Skills Resources Packages.  Grade 10 and 12 BAA courses in the Fine Arts/Applied Skills subject areas do NOT meet the Fine arts/Applied Skills requirement. 

2.5 BAA courses may be developed to meet the needs of students with special needs (not to be confused with modified or adapted courses).  They may be developed for a variety of subjects or purposes such as social-emotional learning, to promote independence, or to develop employability skills.

2.6 The (Environmental) Sustainability Course Content Framework (2010) includes modules that might be used individually or as an entire BAA course.  Modules can be adapted into existing BAA course such as in the areas of leadership, environmental studies, and global issues.  

3.0 Courses Not Eligible for Board/Authority Authorization

3.1 Courses with a significant overlap with current provincial curriculum

3.2 Modified courses

3.3 Remedial courses

3.4 Adapted courses

3.5 GED testing preparation courses

4.0 Criteria

4.1 The Ministry of Education requirements are listed in the document “Board/Authority Authorized Courses: Required Components” and include a Ministry-developed BAA Course Framework Template.

4.2 The requirements for BAA courses define the structure, components, and rigour of a course.  They consist of the following:

  • Course name
  • Grade level
  • Number of credits (maximum of 4)
  • Course synopsis
  • Rationale
  • Organizational structure appropriate to subject/topic
  • Learning outcomes that are assessable and observable and that can be understood by students and parents
  • Instructional component that clarifies the outcomes and provides a range of pedagogical opportunities
  • Assessment component that provides a range of both formative and summative assessment
  • Learning resources that support the learning outcomes

5.0 Approval Process

5.1 The Board requires that any presentation in support of a locally developed course be made through the Superintendent and that it include all requirements as outlined by the Ministry of Education “Board/Authority Authorized Courses Requirements and Procedures Guidebook” (Updated 2011 version).

5.2 Teacher(s) (either individually or in groups) who wish approval of a course of their own design shall use the following procedures:

   5.2.1 Discuss the concept of the proposed course with their school principal before proceeding with the application.

   5.2.2 Make a thorough assessment of the student needs the course would meet.  Consult counsellors and other subject teachers to determine the level of interest and need in the proposed course.  In specific and appropriate situations, it may be advisable to seek expertise from the general community (i.e. specialty courses).

   5.2.3 The course should be consistent with Provincial requirements and based upon current information on how students learn.

   5.2.4 Prepare and submit an overall outline of the proposed course using the BAA Course Application to the School Principal. 

   5.2.5 Include an itemized list of required equipment and facilities, together with a cost analysis and a description of any organizational changes.

5.3 The School Principal will review the proposed course, and will review proposed revisions with the teacher(s).

5.4 The Principal will submit copies of the proposed course to the Superintendent or designate.

5.5 If approved, the Superintendent or designate along with the School Principal and Teacher(s) will present the course to the Board for approval.  In order for the course to be offered in the following school year, Board approval must be obtained prior to April 1st.

5.6 If approved by the Board of Education, the course will be submitted to the Ministry of Education in order to verify that the new course is compliant with the requirements of Board Authorized Course Ministerial Order.

5.7 It is the responsibility of the School Principal to ensure that any instructional material for use with individual students is consistent with and supportive of the objective of locally and provincially approved curricula.

5.8 Each BAA course will be evaluated after its first year and every three years thereafter.  A brief written report is to be submitted to the Superintendent or designate.



School Act Section 85 (2) (i), 168 (2) (b)

Ministry Policy (Board/Authority Authorized Courses, January 2004 and Updated 2011)

BAA Course Form: www.bced.gov.bc.ca/graduation/board authority courses.htm

Ministry Developed Courses: www.bced.gov.bc.ca/irp/welcome.php.

Environmental Sustainability Courses: www.bced.gov.bc.ca/greenschools/sustcoursecontent.htm

Related Policies and Regulations:

Regulation 1115 – Board Authorized Courses Policy

1115 - - Board Authority Authorized Courses Policy
1115-10A - Form - Questionnaire - Form Approval of Locally Adapted or Locally Developed Course