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E a s t e r n   U p d a t e - Wednesday, November 12, 2003

General Meeting Summary

On Thursday November 6th, there was a general meeting held in Kemptville, where a number of issues critical to the well being of teachers were reviewed. This Eastern Update provides a summary of issues reviewed and decisions reached at the recent meeting.

NOTICE TO TECHNOLOGY TEACHERS

QECO has recently made changes to the Technological Studies Chart. The following qualifications, granted by the Government of Ontario, (Ministry of Education and Training), is now each recognized as an acceptable course on the Technological Studies Chart:

  1. The Certificate of Apprenticeship
  2. The Certificate of Qualification
  3. The Red Seal (for inter-provincial standing) on the Certificate of Qualification

Teachers who have previously been evaluated on the Technological Studies chart and who possess these qualifications should apply to QECO for re-evaluation. Applications for re-evaluation can be obtained by visiting the QECO website at www.qeco.on.ca.

OECTA and Recertification

In early October, subsequent to the defeat of the Tories and the election of the new Liberal government, the provincial executive passed a legislative agenda which highlighted the five key issues they wanted to pursue on behalf of our members. Enhanced support to our teachers by meeting the Rozanski recommendations, changing recertification and changing the current performance appraisal model were among the key issues identified.

 

At the recent Council of Presidents meeting, the issue of recertification consumed much of our time and discussion. To this end, the following two motions were put forward and adopted by the Council of Presidents:

  1. That the COP reaffirm its position in opposition to the PLP structure and process.

    That the COP reaffirm its position with respect to professional growth as outlined in the document “Professional Learning Framework: An Integrated Vision, November 1999”.

    That the Provincial Executive approach the government with respect to a stay of the PLP program.

    That the Provincial Executive continue its work to repeal the current PLP program.

    That OECTA enact a provincial advocacy lobby campaign to enable local presidents and teacher to influence MPP’s on the issue of PLP and College of Teachers.
  2. That the Council of Presidents endorse a response to the Ontario Association of Deans of Education (OADE) document that includes the following elements:
    1. eliminate all references to “Standards of Practice”;
    2. eliminate any link to teaching certification;
    3. eliminate any assessment/evaluation component;
      as is detailed in Appendix A as distributed this morning.

These motions clearly articulate our ongoing opposition to the recertification process and a mechanism by which we can effectively lobby our new government, both at the provincial and the local level, to enact changes to the current recertification program.

Until there is a change introduced to the recertification program and process, we continue to urge teachers not to participate in the recertification process. We encourage all teachers to continue with their personal professional development and keep a record of all of these courses in their portfolio.

 

Below you will find a list of OECTA course offerings which we can book for our teachers. We encourage teachers to participate in all of these professional development programs.

OECTA PD SHORT COURSE OFFERINGS

  • Communicating with parents
  • Classroom Assessment
  • Portfolios
  • Classroom Management
  • Special Education
  • Performance Appraisal
  • Early Literacy (Literacy: Kindergarten, Primary, Junior)
  • Early Math Strategies
  • Building Inclusive Communities

New Teachers Conference

Schools should have received information about the OECTA Conference for beginning teachers: OECTA: The Next Generation- to be held in February 2004 in Toronto. The unit will provide support for 9 beginning teachers – that is teachers in their first five years of teaching – up to $200. to participate in this conference. If you are interested in attending, complete the registration form found with the conference information and send a copy both to OECTA provincial office and also fax it to the unit office. Further information can be secured from the OECTA website www.oecta.on.ca .

Unit Levy Recommendation

In November 2002, it was approved that the unit institute a levy of $3. per person per pay. This unit levy was put into place to allow the local unit to provide funding for 75% of a unit release officer, reinstitute the PD fund and the Third World Experience Fund. It was further noted, when responding to questions, that this unit levy and the amount of the unit levy would be reconsidered if additional release time was provided by Provincial Office.

At AGM 2003, the motion sponsored by our Unit was passed, which ensured that we would receive additional release time from Provincial grants. With this increase in provincial grant we will have to continue to fund 25% of our release local release officer, and also maintain the local PD fund as well as the Third World Experience. Other additional expenses the unit must absorb locally relates to the unit office.

Unit Officer Release – ¼ salary
Third World Experience
Unit PD.
Unit Office
$17,000
$3,000
$8,000
$20,000
$48,000

In June the Executive and Staff Reps agreed that the Unit Levy should be decreased to $2.00 per member per pay would. This motion must be considered and approved by a General Meeting to be enacted constitutionally.

The reduction to $2./person per pay for the remainder of the school year generate approximately $49,000.

Motion: It is recommended that the unit levy be reduced to $2.00 per member to be effective December 1, 2003.

After considerable discussion, this motion was put forward and considered by those in attendance at the General Meeting and defeated. As such the levy will remain at $3 per person per pay for the 2003-2004 school year.

A subsequent motion was passed by those at the general meeting:

Motion: That the additional revenue secured from the $1/member per pay will be directed toward collective bargaining and individual professional development.

It is anticipated that the individual PD fund will be increased to $12,000 from $8,000 as originally outlined in the budget and approximately $6,000 will be directed to collective bargaining.

The budget was then approved as amended. A final copy of the budget and formal minutes of the general meeting will be distributed to the schools as soon as possible.

Report Cards on the Internet

This issue was raised by many teachers at the general meeting expressing concerns about problems which have been experienced over the past couple of weeks. We ask staff reps to get feedback from teachers and forward it to the Unit office by fax.

Become a Committee Member - Collective Bargaining Committee

We will be forming the collective bargaining committee to formulate the package for the upcoming round of negotiations. If anyone is interested in helping in this initial stage – please contact the unit office and let us know. It is a great opportunity to meet teachers from around the school board and to work on behalf of your colleagues. Meetings will commence in early January as we review responses to teacher surveys.

 
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