Why unions matter

In loco contractus

It has taken a lot of restraint to ignore the volumes of micro-aggressive, passive aggressive, aggressive, and macro-aggressive comments flying around the Twitterverse about education since our most recent contract with the government expired this past August. And then there is the elected official du jour with the education portfolio. I have tried not to […]

Undercover Boss

Have you ever watched a show called Undercover Boss? An average episode of the hour long program shows a CEO or top tier exec going incognito to better understand the work flow, flaws, and family of an organization. The show makes sure that the top dog is put alongside some pre-selected employees(often outspoken) who, fearlessly […]

Beyond

Did anyone else go to sleep on the last night of school already thinking about next year? I did. It’s not the first time either. After 10 years in education, it is now a given that I will go to sleep on the last day of school reflective, happy, and excited about the past, present, and future […]

Remember to breathe (as you continue to inspire others)

I checked in on a few of my former student teachers today. Each of whom are shining examples of professionalism, commitment, and creativity in their classrooms. They have been on my mind alot lately, as daily news of the government sponsored attrition games occupy headlines and conversations across the province. I am sure they represent the hundreds, […]

Bursting bubbles

POP! What’s that sound? Fear and loss, dreams – on hold, watching, without a voice as opportunity is cut and cancelled. For the people, or for their bank accounts? Doubts – fill the staffroom. Murmurs – echo down the halls. Uncertainties – buzz through minds. Bubbles – bursting before they are even formed. Cuts like […]

Be Strong in the Face of Poor Government

FDK (too soon) EQAO (to help real estate $) Class sizes (to build resilience) Drill and Kill Math (We’re Open for Worksheets) Funding formulas (creative govt accounting to underfund boards) Antiquated HPE curriculum (since no one needs to learn about consent) Don’t let them fool you. Despite what the government says to the contrary: public consultation […]

Before you get hurt…again.

Student: (momentarily non-responsive to verbal interaction) slap, push, slap, hair grab, lunge, slap, yell, cry, run, crouch, cry, calm, apolgize Staff: (1 CYW, 2 SERT) block, block, reassure, block, supportive stance, reassure, block, redirect, clear space, block, reassure, follow, remain calm, reassure, accept The slaps(verbal/physical) are like slabs of concrete that a student piles up when […]

Teaching in Uncertain Times

When I graduated teacher’s college it was the beginning of the “Harris years”.  Teachers were being declared redundant all over Ontario. I spent three years teaching outside of the province.  Since then I have been through many rounds of collective bargaining-both as a teacher and a local ETFO leader.  I have seen how Ontario’s Provincial […]

Why Ontario Teachers Need to be Political

According to The Washington Post’s Valarie Strauss “Teachers are often expected to remain politically neutral in class, not letting their students know which candidate they support or where they stand on controversial issues” (Strauss, 2016). Parents may anticipate that teachers could “indoctrinate” students by expressing their own views in classrooms (Strauss, 2016) and as a […]

Gender Equity in 2018

  The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms outlines what gender equity should look like … but do women really have gender equity in 2018? In education and workplace participation, gender equity has made some strides. in 2015, women are almost as likely to have a high school (82.5% women vs. 89.3% men) or university […]

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