EPSB.ca » Our Division » Board Policies & Administrative Regulations » C - Division Administration » CW.AR Purchasing and Disposal

Purchasing and Disposal

  • Code: CW.AR
    Topic: Purchasing and Disposal
    Issue Date: 01/08/2018
    Effective Date: 01/08/2018
    Review Year: 2025


  • To provide direction and clarity to all District employees regarding purchasing of goods, services and construction by Edmonton Public Schools (the District); and

  • To ensure:
    • transparency and accountability when the District is purchasing goods, services and construction
    • maximum value is obtained for funds expended
    • goods, services and construction are obtained in a competitive manner whenever possible and that competition is fair, transparent and open with no preferential treatment given to any particular vendor
    • award decisions are made ethically
    • practices comply with appropriate policies, regulations, legislation and trade agreement obligations.


Approval Authority is a position within the District that has been given an approval authority level (based on the Financial Accountability Matrix) for expenditure of District funds.  

Approval Authority Level is the maximum dollar value that an approval authority can commit to for the purchase of goods, services and construction on behalf of the District. 

Construction is a construction, reconstruction, demolition, repair or renovation of a building, structure or other civil engineering or architectural work and includes site preparation, excavation, drilling, seismic investigation, the supply of products and materials, the supply of equipment and machinery if they are included in and incidental to the construction, and the installation and repair of fixtures of a building, structure or other civil engineering or architectural work, but does not include professional consulting services e.g., architectural or engineering services related to the construction contract unless they are included in the requirement.

 Contract is a binding agreement outlining terms and conditions for the purchase of goods, services or construction, including the rights of the District and the vendor.

 Emergency Purchase is a purchase required under a condition in which, in the opinion of an approval authority, risk to person or property may occur if immediate action is not taken. 

Goods are products of a tangible, durable or consumable nature, including software.  This includes goods donated to the District that fall within the Site Asset Management System (SAMS) guidelines. 

Purchase Order is a contract between the District and a vendor for the purchase of goods and/or services at an agreed upon price, quantity, quality and delivery date. 

Purchasing Authority is the authority to sign or enter into a contract on behalf of the District.   

Purchasing & Contract Services (PCS) is the department responsible for the purchase of goods, services and construction on behalf of the District. 

Registered Vendor is a vendor that has met specific criteria established by PCS in order to provide goods and services to the District.  Not all registered vendors have contracts with the District. 

Services refer to labour or tasks performed by individuals. 

Surplus is excess inventory that is no longer required.


  1. PCS is responsible for:
    1. managing the purchasing of goods, services and construction with an aggregate value of $5,000 or more on behalf of the District
    2. establishing contracts for use by the District
    3. managing the approval process for registered vendors for use by the District and maintaining the registered vendor database
    4. authorizing the disposal of all surplus items and the subsequent transfer of funds within the District
    5. the disposal of declared surplus items
    6. vetting and review of all contracts over $5,000 in order to minimize risk to the District, and to ensure adherence to District regulations, policies and guidelines
    7. maintaining a contract management database of all District contracts.
  2. Decision Units (DUs) are responsible for:
    1. purchasing from registered vendors as described in the Edmonton Public Schools Purchasing Procedures and Guidelines Manual, which is available on the PCS website
    2. prior to entering into a contract for goods or services under Exceptions (section B in this regulation) with an aggregate value of $5,000 or more, sending all vendor contracts to PCS for review and vetting prior to executing. Upon execution of the contract, the DU will provide a copy of the contract to PCS to store in the contract management database.
    3. entering District assets, including donated goods, into SAMS in accordance with the guidelines provided in the SAMS and Surplus Manual, which is available on the PCS website
    4. when declaring surplus items, providing a detailed list of surplus items to PCS.
  3. Approval authorities are responsible for, prior to authorizing an expenditure, ensuring that the requirements of this administrative regulation have been followed.


    1. For purchase of goods and/or services, if a contract exists with a vendor who can supply the required goods and/or services, then these goods and/or services must be ordered from the contracted vendor. The list of contracts is available on the PCS website.

    2. In the absence of any contract, purchasing of goods and/or services:
      1. with an aggregate value less than $5,000
        1. may be ordered directly from any registered vendor. Purchases must be in accordance with this administrative regulation and the Edmonton Public Schools Purchasing Procedures and Guidelines Manual.
        2. use of the District credit card for these purchases is encouraged.
      2. with an aggregate value of $5,000 or more:
        1. requisition must be created and the purchase must be managed by PCS.
        2. purchases with an aggregate value of $75,000 or more, in accordance with the New West Partnership Trade Agreement (NWPTA) and the Canadian Free Trade Agreement (CFTA), require posting on the designated electronic bidding system.
    3. Purchase of the following goods or services, can be managed directly by the DU:
      1. fieldtrips (including overnight and out of province)
      2. catering
      3. professional development (including training/conference/convention fees)
      4. student and/or staff travel (including airfare, vehicle rental, accommodation, subsistence)
      5. yearbooks and agendas
      6. graduations
      7. fundraising products
      8. store supplies e.g., canteen
      9. emergency purchases

        These purchases should be made using registered vendors wherever possible. Use of the District credit card for these purchases up to $5,000, where feasible, is encouraged. For purchases of these goods and/or services exceeding $5,000, a requisition should be created and the purchase managed by PCS.
    4. Splitting or dividing a purchase in order to avoid exceeding an individual’s authorized limit or a liit set by this administrative regulation is prohibited.

    5. Construction at any value must be initiated through Infrastructure.

    6. Purchase of computer hardware not available on contract must be approved by District Technology.

    7. All goods purchased in the name of a school or District department or donated to the District by a third party shall become property of the District. This includes purchases by community/parent groups and individuals which are donations to the District, which become the property of the District. All such donations must be accompanied by a signed letter transferring title of the property to the District (DDBB.AR – Community Purchase of Supplies and Equipment).

    8. This regulation applies to the purchases of goods, services and construction from any and all District managed resources including:
      1. budget allocations
      2. school generated funds
      3. funds raised by District revenue generating initiatives
      4. any other funds received by any school or District department from any source, including donations.
    The directives and procedures regarding purchasing and disposal articulated in this regulation do not apply to the following:
    1. employee collective agreements
    2. legal services
    3. provincially managed capital projects specifically regulated by Government of Alberta legislation, policies and processes
    4. premiums paid to insurance companies
    5. land acquisition and lease back of properties
    6. joint-use property arrangements.


CO.BP Fiscal Oversight and Accountability
CWA.AR Expenditure of Division Funds
DDBB.AR Community Purchase of Supplies and Equipment
ELA.AR School Consolidation: Equipment Disposal
FBCB.AR Division Staff Code of Conduct
EPSB – Surplus Assets
Site Asset Management (SAMS) & Surplus Manual
Financial Accountability Matrix
Education Act - Sections 7(4)(b), 33(1)(d), 60

(please see Section 200 of the School Act)