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About 23Gradin

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  1. I found this to be an interesting read from Janet Steffenhagen: http://blogs.vancouversun.com/2013/06/09/peter-fassbender-and-the-back-to-basics-education-movement-in-the-70s/?__federated=1 Esp. the parts below: ...Fassbender introduced a motion asking the Education Ministry to restore corporal punishment, the letter says, and seconded a motion to have the Langley board withdraw from the B.C. School Trustees’ Association because it had been “sluggish and lax” for several years. (The board later changes its mind and tried to dominate the association instead.) In May 1977, after five months of the Basic Bunch (as they were known), “morale had taken such a rapid turn for the worse that LTA officers sought a meeting with senior officials in the ministry of education,” the newsletter states. A meeting was held to discuss “the effect school board actions were having on teacher morale, the board’s refusal to accept a recommendation from the senior staff and what appeared as a vindictive attitude by individual trustees towards teachers.” I am a believer in people being able to change their views, but when I saw this I was a little concerned whether his perspectives had changed or not.
  2. Just to be fair, and I personally do share RUPERTKBD's point about not resorting down to a certain level, there have been many examples of both sides not just the anti-govt side doing this, particularly the shots at Jim Iker's choice of hairstyle, hippy persona, and characterizing teachers as greedy, communist, etc. I agree that regardless of side, once that line is crossed, the credibility is lost, and the argument becomes little more than a cheap joke.
  3. One aspect among many that I am puzzled about is, with most other disputes, negotiations are able to occur even during job action and even full-on striking; in this case however, the govt is insistent that the strike end before any negotiations are possible. Wouldn't it just make more sense to get to the table regardless and try yo actually negotiate/bargain without this precondition? I may be wrong, but I've never heard of any other strikers who were given such a precondition. (If there are cases like this please sincerely enlighten me as I just can't grasp that part of it)
  4. I think the issue with Smyth's article is going to be the fact that while EAs definitely do vital work with students, Smyth oversimplifies the issue as simply student to adult ratio. EAs do not create the lessons or educational programs, the teacher of the specific class does; EAs are indispensable in carrying out and assisting with their assigned special needs student(s), but the planning, prepping, and evaluating is done by the teacher. This becomes more difficult with more IEPs (Individual Education Plan) being required to address the diverse needs that occur more and more now in the classes. So although well-meaning and cost-saving in intent, increasing the numbers of EAs does very little at actually alleviating the difficulties of high numbers of IEPs in a given class.
  5. That is asking for a lot. Three years is a loooong time from now.
  6. Actually, maybe NOT being facetious after all! I have a boy who, because he's 14 and doesn't qualify for the $40/day for tutoring/activities, has all day with free time on his hands now and who is definitely tech-savvy enough to do something like this LOL! And the scary thing is, there are many like him out there! LOL!
  7. Oy. Just saw/read about Clark's presser earlier today. Perhaps it would have been better after all if she had remained silent......
  8. I don't have first hand accounts of this as I was not present at any, but according to some on twitter, when parents showed up to MLA offices - some with their children for an "MLA play day" - the BC Lib MLAs were instructed?advised? to lock their constituency office doors (apparently some even posted notices on their doors stating that they would not meet anyone?). If true, that is extremely troubling as regardless of what party an MLA or MP is from, they owe a duty of responsibility to the electorate especially those in their ridings.
  9. I should add though that I think that the majority of teachers don't get into the profession to do this, but make no bones about it, there are those that do.
  10. FYI the fact that he was also a principal makes a HUGE difference in his particular pension; it gives him an additional scale (? Not sure if that's the specific term sorry) - that's why there ARE some in the teaching profession who see getting into admin. as the holy grail. Then beyond that it's the board positions above school admin. So yes, not knowing the specifics of his situation, I would surmise that your friend successfully climbed the financial ladder so to speak!
  11. Just being facetious here, but how do you know that's NOT a nine-year old who did the photo? Lol after all, most of them aren't in school so they have time on their hands!
  12. Just a further note, I'm sure many are hurting - and the hurt will only get worse as this drags on - but regardless of where we may each stand in terms of our own individual perspectives, please let's not forget that these are fellow people who just like us have families, rent/mortgages, food and other bills to pay. I will not begrudge anyone else trying to reasonably better their conditions just as I would hope they would not begrudge me doing the same.
  13. I am quite sure based on anecdotal evidence only mind you that the decision was a reluctant one. That is why most agreed to the phasing in of job action from stage 1 which people barely noticed (mostly directed at formal administrative meetings) to stage 2 (rotating) to finally stage 3 which is the current state. Based on discussions with many of them, it wasn't a gung-ho ra ra ra spirit, as the sense was rather resignation to the notion that phases 1&2 didn't have any effect and that this was the last resort. I do feel though that there were some grave miscalculations in terms of the timing of the escalation, but that once their decision had been made, there was no turning back.
  14. I hope I'm wrong, but despite whatever concessions are made - short of the govt dropping their e80 clause protecting them from the outcome of the COA - I can only see binding mediation/arbitration (highly unlikely govt agrees to this) or legislation (which becomes less of a problem in the courts' eyes if it can be demonstrated enough time and "efforts" have been exhausted) as the only means to end this current stalemate. The only way I see legislation being entertained by govt is if this is dragged into mid-October to allow the song and dance of this faux negotiation to be demonstrated to the courts. This looks like the first year ever where the NHL season will kick off BEFORE schools (Public) start!
  15. "I doubt the teachers are actually for the strike, but they're even less for the government." THAT is the main sentiment I get as well. On several levels, there is "more than meets the eye" so to speak. Beyond the issues of wages, benefits and CC/CS, the concern is that if the govt is able to get away with their redoing of contracts (whether it is thru winning the appeal or through a deal where the gains from the courts are negotiated away) this may set the new pattern/precedent of how contracts are dealt with. Despite govt's demands to get in line with previous public sector contracts, the reality is that the teachers contract represents a new cycle/round, with the nurses coming up later in the fall and others behind them. That is why govt is so entrenched.