British Columbia Teacher Strike

Does anyone know any greedy teachers? I read a comment about how teacher strikes are all about teacher greed, not about meeting the needs of kids. I’m confused.

I have never seen teacher bargain for the wages we really should be paid. 
– We don’t bargain to have the multitude of hours extra we work paid.
– We don’t fight to be paid wages that are more comparable to other professionals with similar levels of education and experience.
– We do see that being paid poorly means people don’t respect your profession the same way they respect many other professionals.
– We do see that lack of a reasonable cost of living increase makes it increasingly difficult to support our families, even modestly living.
– A friend of mine who is teaching in BC was telling me that the last bargaining session included an offer for a wage increase, but the teachers took a class size concession instead, which the government then attempted to revoke. (She added the following clarification for me: “Just a point of clarification. Hopefully I’ve got the fact straight. The class size and composition language was stripped with Bill 22. This was found to be illegal upon appeal then the government turned around and crafted more legislation that basically used the same language. This 2nd bill was found to be illegal recently and the Supreme Court also commented that the government in 2005 was trying to provoke a strike by negotiating in bad faith.

Now the recent government proposal includes a clause to say that either side can break the contract given 60 days notice. Apparently the government thinks that they might win the most recent appeal on class size and composition and thinks the teachers will accept something like this.”

I am not leaving the public system to make more money. I am leaving to find a smaller class size, carefully considered class composition, and test-free learning that is respectful to children and parents.

There are few greedy teachers. Teachers who want to be paid what we are worth become managers or find other professions. Those who teach more than a year or two are teaching because they are passionate about working with kids!

Those of you supporting BC’s teachers, thank you for standing by the people who are fighting for the quality of public education. Thank you for finding ways to cope with all the challenges a strike presents, and standing up for classrooms that are teachable. Your kids deserve it. Even if you don’t have kids, this matters, since you need to know that the changes the government is fighting for will result in crummy employees of the future, not to mention a myriad of other societal issues, which in the long run are very likely to cost more than properly supporting education. Thank you for standing by teachers and standing up for BC’s future.


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