As most Ontario parents know by now, the Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario is ramping up their work to rule strike action effective October 28th. The new strike action is to stop all VOLUNTARY participation in extracurricular activities. AND the premier of Ontario, Kathleen Wynne, now want to allow the school boards to dock the teachers pay for not doing something that is NOT a requirement of their job.
It is necessary to point out that not all the teachers voted for Wynne and not all the teachers necessarily want to be in a strike position and a very large percentage of teachers put hundreds of dollars of their own money towards making their classroom run.
There are plenty more things that our teachers are not doing at the request of their union, but this isn’t what this post is about.
We as parents in Ontario need to support our teachers, by understanding the position they are being placed in by the Ontario government. Our teachers want nothing more than to improve the quality of our children’s education. I know quite a few teachers and all they want is to provide the best education for their students. The teachers in my kids school are all amazing and I know that they are all working together as a team to ensure the safety of my children while also providing a most excellent education.
Our teachers have been working without a contract for over a year now and while this may seem trivial to some, for our teachers this is their livelihood. Teaching pays the bills, but I think some get much more out of it than that. There are some amazing teachers out there that can change a student’s life. There are teachers who are willing to talk to a student when they see they are having a rough day, strike action be darned! And let’s not forget our special needs teachers who often put themselves in harms way to take care of their students, often being bitten or punched. It takes a strong person to be a teacher.
I’ve seen it in action. My second youngest son has made some great connections at our school with teachers, without those connections I fear he wouldn’t want to go to school at all. And I know of a few other children in our school who would be haveing a very rough time of things if it wasn’t for the dedication of our teachers to help each student.
The EFTO has asked for help from the parents of Ontario to help resolve this situation. I know it’s frustrating, and the media isn’t doing the teachers any favours. If you’re confused or upset by the situation talk to a teacher ask a principal, go to the source and find out what’s really going on before you fly off the handle and get mad at the teachers.
We have to work together, you want support from them with your child, then give them support when they are fighting for your child.