Alberta Liberals support complaints by CDI students

CBC News Posted: May 30, 2013 10:54 PM MT

The Alberta Liberals are backing a lawsuit filed by some former Edmonton nursing students.

Alberta Liberal Advanced Education Critic Kent Hehr has requested that Deputy Premier Thomas Lukaszuk investigate whether CDI College is giving students in the licensed practical nursing (LPN) program the education that they paid for.

In his letter to Lukaszuk, Hehr summarizes some of the allegations outlined in a Statement of Claim filed by two former CDI nursing students, each of whom paid almost $30,000 to attend the LPN program in question.

Among their complaints, the students claim the program relied upon unqualified teachers and failed to provide textbooks and learning materials.

Instead, they  were encouraged to watch Netflix movies and have wheelchair races during class time, the lawsuit says.

As a result of these poor practices, the students’ statement of claim states that the complainants made several significant mistakes and medication errors during their clinical placements.

"The students haven’t done anything wrong," said Hehr in a release Thursday. "They applied for programs which promised to train and prepare them for the workforce. Instead, they’ve taken on thousands of dollars in debt for subpar educations while the government looks the other way."

"My concern is that the government is giving loans to students to attend a private, for-profit institution that isn’t providing them with usable education," he added. "The government is propping up a private enterprise at the expense of students and their futures."

"Minister Lukaszuk needs to answer for this," said Alberta Liberal Leader Raj Sherman.

"This severe failure of the Redford government to oversee the quality of the education not only hurt these students — who spent a lot of money — but it also potentially endangered patient's lives," he said Friday.

"How can this be allowed to happen in Alberta?"

Admissions into the CDI College LPN program were recently suspended for failing to comply with the standards set by the College of Licensed Practical Nurses of Alberta.

You can read Kent Hehr’s letter to Deputy Premier Lukaszuk below.