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BC Teachers Getting Screwed...Again

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While the really bad teachers will be easy to pick out, how do you evaluate the average teachers performance? How do you compare the performance of a teacher working at a school in a reasonably affluent area with motivated families, to one working in an inner city school with kids from poor and dysfunctional families, often with serious substance abuse problems? A good number of kids who don't even get enough to eat and what they do get isn't very good for them anyway. You can't expect the same results, so how do you evaluate their teachers?

Well said! High SES kids will improve regardless of teaching performance, low ones will not. Schools that teach to the test will show better results despite the fact that the students receive a poorer education.

Schools in Ontario must set performance goals based on previous grade 3 and 6 EQAO test results. Unfortunately, they are forced to select positive gains. There are often situations where a higher than average group of students come through the pipeline. A school gets praised in the local paper and then despite knowing the year was an anomaly principals have no choice but to set goals that improve upon those numbers. The following year when test results inevitably fall back to normal the school is admonished in local papers for missing every single goal.

Anyway, standardized test data can be useful for trend analysis and some planning but not for evaluating school and teacher performance.

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If management and labour were able to disarm, politically, and have some real dialogue then I'm sure they could collaborate on some great ideas to improve quality and reduce costs.

Indeed. For the most they generally are on the same page; unfortunately, they are often not permitted to work together in a common sense fashion.

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Indeed. For the most they generally are on the same page; unfortunately, they are often not permitted to work together in a common sense fashion.

Indeed, management suspects that those involved in management-labour relations have it in their interest for things to not go well - ever. I remember one time I worked for a large company that was involved in an extended negotiation over some terms that would have been more onerous for the company to reject than to concede, and they still rejected.

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Indeed. For the most they generally are on the same page; unfortunately, they are often not permitted to work together in a common sense fashion.

Given that this thread is about the BCTF, could a member of that union (Socialist?) please explain to me why all other public sector unions in BC have quietly found labour solutions and signed collective agreements that are current without any job action. What is it about teachers and their union that make it virtually impossible to arrive at a collective agreement without either mediation or legislation. Please refrain from the standard "Well, they stripped our contract in 2002". They did the same to the Health Care Workers, yet that union can still negotiate a contract with the govt.

If all other unions can work with the duly elected govt, why can the BCTF not do the same?

I await enlightenment.

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I have another question for the teachers on this board. It is often stated by teachers that they can justify only working 192 days per year ( it is actually more like 175 by the time you render out pro- d's, exam weeks etc, but what the heck, let's use 192) by the extraordinary amount of hours worked each day. OK, so you are in front of a class for 5.5 hours per day, yet it is not unusual to hear teachers lament about average work days of 10 plus hours. Average!!!

So, let us take an example of a grade 9 math teacher who has taught this course for 3 years at two terms per year. Start with the assumption that Pythagarus (sp?) is dead, so his theory is not going to change. And please take into account that most middle or high school tests and exams are multiple choice and take seconds to mark in a scantron. How does that teacher stretch out a 5.5 hour day to double that?

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"I don't really understand all this animosity toward teachers, they are arguably the second most important people in a kids life next to their parents, sometimes the most important. While I don't always agree with their union's position, the fact they are teachers doesn't disqualify them from having the right to advocate for themselves and what they think is best for the children in their care."

You've fallen smack in the middle of the trap set by the teachers union: Equating the uniuons efforts to better the financial/benefit package for their members with the4 welfare of children.

Unless the teachers are badly underpaid so they simply cannot attract good people to the profession(not the case in Canada, anywhere) there is no correlation between a 0% increase in wages and the quality of the kids education.

No, its the old civil service cononundrum- demands for annual wage increases that exceed inflation or the ability of the public to pay. It just does not happen in the private sector, once the cost of labour becomes onerous enough that there is no profit, the business folds or moves offshore. Not so with teachers, there is no effective brake on wages because there are no votes in a politician growing a pair of balls. Taxes can always be increased. And every shop steward in every staff room in every school in BC knows it. They know parents will freak out if they have to find day care for Sally and Jimmy during a strike. Easy Peasy.

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"I don't really understand all this animosity toward teachers, they are arguably the second most important people in a kids life next to their parents, sometimes the most important. While I don't always agree with their union's position, the fact they are teachers doesn't disqualify them from having the right to advocate for themselves and what they think is best for the children in their care."

You've fallen smack in the middle of the trap set by the teachers union: Equating the uniuons efforts to better the financial/benefit package for their members with the4 welfare of children.

Unless the teachers are badly underpaid so they simply cannot attract good people to the profession(not the case in Canada, anywhere) there is no correlation between a 0% increase in wages and the quality of the kids education.

No, its the old civil service cononundrum- demands for annual wage increases that exceed inflation or the ability of the public to pay. It just does not happen in the private sector, once the cost of labour becomes onerous enough that there is no profit, the business folds or moves offshore. Not so with teachers, there is no effective brake on wages because there are no votes in a politician growing a pair of balls. Taxes can always be increased. And every shop steward in every staff room in every school in BC knows it. They know parents will freak out if they have to find day care for Sally and Jimmy during a strike. Easy Peasy.

I don't do anything of the sort. I just don't accept that teachers opinions and concerns have no value and should be rejected out of hand, just because they are unionized and work for a school district.

There doesn't have to be a direct correlation between between a % increase and the quality of the kids education. If that was the case, no one would ever get a raise unless they could increase their productivity. If they couldn't, inflation would just drive them into poverty. Our kids will be so much better educated if we can just make their teachers poorer.

My gripe is not that teachers might get a raise, it's that they won't put a number on the table for a starting point to negotiations.

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I have another question for the teachers on this board. It is often stated by teachers that they can justify only working 192 days per year ( it is actually more like 175 by the time you render out pro- d's, exam weeks etc, but what the heck, let's use 192) by the extraordinary amount of hours worked each day. OK, so you are in front of a class for 5.5 hours per day, yet it is not unusual to hear teachers lament about average work days of 10 plus hours. Average!!!

So, let us take an example of a grade 9 math teacher who has taught this course for 3 years at two terms per year. Start with the assumption that Pythagarus (sp?) is dead, so his theory is not going to change. And please take into account that most middle or high school tests and exams are multiple choice and take seconds to mark in a scantron. How does that teacher stretch out a 5.5 hour day to double that?

You want to know why? Because the corporate driven neo-liberals continue to cut education to satisfy their corporate string pullers. You have no clue what goes on in a modern classroom. You have no idea of the high number of needy learners already in jam packed classrooms. Hell, you have no concept of 21st Century learning and the push for 21st Century Skills. BC students receive the least funding in the country while the premier sends her kids to private school. There is a neo-liberal agenda to destroy public education. The BCTF is standing up for the 99% against these corporate pigs while promoting social justice. The BCTF is a staunch supporter of public education. Public education is needed to promote democracy even though the neo-liberals are trying to destroy democracy.

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"I don't really understand all this animosity toward teachers, they are arguably the second most important people in a kids life next to their parents, sometimes the most important. While I don't always agree with their union's position, the fact they are teachers doesn't disqualify them from having the right to advocate for themselves and what they think is best for the children in their care."

You've fallen smack in the middle of the trap set by the teachers union: Equating the uniuons efforts to better the financial/benefit package for their members with the4 welfare of children.

Unless the teachers are badly underpaid so they simply cannot attract good people to the profession(not the case in Canada, anywhere) there is no correlation between a 0% increase in wages and the quality of the kids education.

No, its the old civil service cononundrum- demands for annual wage increases that exceed inflation or the ability of the public to pay. It just does not happen in the private sector, once the cost of labour becomes onerous enough that there is no profit, the business folds or moves offshore. Not so with teachers, there is no effective brake on wages because there are no votes in a politician growing a pair of balls. Taxes can always be increased. And every shop steward in every staff room in every school in BC knows it. They know parents will freak out if they have to find day care for Sally and Jimmy during a strike. Easy Peasy.

Maybe you should read this and educate yourself. http://www.bctf.ca/uploadedFiles/Public/Parents/ParentLetterJobAction_en.pdf

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You want to know why? Because the corporate driven neo-liberals continue to cut education to satisfy their corporate string pullers. You have no clue what goes on in a modern classroom. You have no idea of the high number of needy learners already in jam packed classrooms. Hell, you have no concept of 21st Century learning and the push for 21st Century Skills. BC students receive the least funding in the country while the premier sends her kids to private school. There is a neo-liberal agenda to destroy public education. The BCTF is standing up for the 99% against these corporate pigs while promoting social justice. The BCTF is a staunch supporter of public education. Public education is needed to promote democracy even though the neo-liberals are trying to destroy democracy.

Maybe you did not understand my question, or maybe it was too complicated or mayhaps you just don't want to answer. But I have to say, that is the most bizarre answer I have ever seen to a pretty simple question.

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Socialist,

Hate to nitpick, but don't you think that the genius's behind your latest cartoon should take some math classes. They yak about 12 - 16 hour days, then show a pie chart that maxes out at 14 hours. The really humorous part is the 8 hour standard work day. Was this produced for the Korean school system? And I particularly enjoyed the part about 2 - 4 weeks of continuing ed, 3 weeks to plan a curriculum that is given to you and 4, count them, 4 weeks to get school ready. C'mon, you must have had one heck of a good yuck on that part of the cartoon. Is this the level that you teach at? If so I take back my previous comment about you potentially being a good teacher.

Sorry, I asked you for a serious answer and you respond with cartoons. 2/10 redo. And please, no more cartoons. They diminish your already paper thin credibility.

I think you should seriously rehash your cute little tag line to "Piss me off and I paper you six feet under in cartoons"

Edited by Pct2017

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Socialist,

Hate to nitpick, but don't you think that the genius's behind your latest cartoon should take some math classes. They yak about 12 - 16 hour days, then show a pie chart that maxes out at 14 hours. The really humorous part is the 8 hour standard work day. Was this produced for the Korean school system? And I particularly enjoyed the part about 2 - 4 weeks of continuing ed, 3 weeks to plan a curriculum that is given to you and 4, count them, 4 weeks to get school ready. C'mon, you must have had one heck of a good yuck on that part of the cartoon. Is this the level that you teach at? If so I take back my previous comment about you potentially being a good teacher.

Sorry, I asked you for a serious answer and you respond with cartoons. 2/10 redo. And please, no more cartoons. They diminish your already paper thin credibility.

I think you should seriously rehash your cute little tag line to "Piss me off and I paper you six feet under in cartoons"

Thank goodness your ignorance about teachers is a minority view. The public is very much behind BC teachers in this fight against the neo-liberal corportists.

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Thank goodness your ignorance about teachers is a minority view. The public is very much behind BC teachers in this fight against the neo-liberal corportists.

Point of curiosity. How do you reconcile your view that the majority of British Columbians are teacher loving card carrying socialists with the results of May 14, 2013. I mean it should be fairly clear to all but the most intellectually challenged that we said no to socialism and by extension, no to reckless spending on self serving groups like the BCTF.

And the future for the NDP and by extension, the BCTF looks pretty grim with the Greens getting traction and the NDP tearing itself apart (the fallout from Kwangate in that party is going to be massive).

Anyway, I know by now that you never answer questions asked of you, You only know how to drag out tired old slogans and cartoons, so I will not hold mr breath.....

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Point of curiosity. How do you reconcile your view that the majority of British Columbians are teacher loving card carrying socialists with the results of May 14, 2013. I mean it should be fairly clear to all but the most intellectually challenged that we said no to socialism and by extension, no to reckless spending on self serving groups like the BCTF.

And the future for the NDP and by extension, the BCTF looks pretty grim with the Greens getting traction and the NDP tearing itself apart (the fallout from Kwangate in that party is going to be massive).

Anyway, I know by now that you never answer questions asked of you, You only know how to drag out tired old slogans and cartoons, so I will not hold mr breath.....

Which question do you want answered? Why do you support neo-liberals who are out to destroy public education. Maybe you should go back to school and learn some social justice. You're views are of the past. and you are wrong. The Green party will support the BCTF and negotiate in good faith if they get in. The courts rules against the Liberals. What more do you need to see? The courts ruled in favor of the BCTF and from what I'm reading I'd say about 85%of the public is with the BCTF and against the neo-liberals.

Also, people blame teachers for problems in public education, but the biggest problem is inequality.

Also, the BCTF is reaching out to parents to tell them what is really happening. You want to believe neo-libs, then that's your problem.

Read this and maybe yo will understand. http://www.bctf.ca/uploadedFiles/Public/Parents/ParentLetterJobAction_en.pdf

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Which question do you want answered? Why do you support neo-liberals who are out to destroy public education. Maybe you should go back to school and learn some social justice. You're views are of the past. and you are wrong. The Green party will support the BCTF and negotiate in good faith if they get in. The courts rules against the Liberals. What more do you need to see? The courts ruled in favor of the BCTF and from what I'm reading I'd say about 85%of the public is with the BCTF and against the neo-liberals.

Also, people blame teachers for problems in public education, but the biggest problem is inequality.

Also, the BCTF is reaching out to parents to tell them what is really happening. You want to believe neo-libs, then that's your problem.

Read this and maybe yo will understand. http://www.bctf.ca/uploadedFiles/Public/Parents/ParentLetterJobAction_en.pdf

As I said, ask a simple question and get rhetoric and cartoons in response. So, let us explore your "answer". 10 months ago, the public says in no uncertain terms that we reject socialism, but instead we are going to support the party who will manage our taxes properly. Now, 85% of us have changed completely and are going to go to bat for the most reviled public sector union in the province? Strange logic.

And, at the end of the day, when the BCTF goes on it's semi-annual strike or job action, really, who cares what the "public" thinks one way or the other. We have elected a government to do a job, and they will do that job as requested. They should in no way change that job just because some bitter little socialists write in a blog that they are going to stomp their feet and hold their breath if they do not get a raise.

BTW, how do you explain (not that I will get a meaningful answer from you) that once the much loved court case got away from Susan Griffin, the next judge to see it was willing to stay the findings until it goes to appeal. This was very unusual, and in my mind shows that the case is not as ironclad as it appears. Don't get me wrong, I think that the Liberals were wrong in tearing up the contracts, but they were wrong for the right reasons. I just don't think that the ruling would have been stayed if there was no doubt it would survive the next level of scrutiny at the Supreme Court of Canada.

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This has nothing to do with getting a raise. It has to do with reducing class sizes that will benefit all learners. The neo-libs are trying to privatize education. That would be terrible for democracy as only the rich will benefit.

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Don't get me wrong, I think that the Liberals were wrong in tearing up the contracts, but they were wrong for the right reasons.

I think it important to be precise about what the teachers won in court and what they did not. The Liberals passed a law prohibiting things like class size from being in contracts. The court said that it is an infringement of collective bargaining rights to exclude items from a negotiated contract prior to negotiating starting. What the court did NOT say is that the government had to agree to put class size in nor did they say that the government could not legislate teachers back to work and impose a contract of their choosing. Edited by TimG

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Also, it is important to know that per pupil funding in BC is $1000 less/student than the rest of Canada. That is a FACT, even if you choose to close your eyes.

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Also, it is important to know that per pupil funding in BC is $1000 less/student than the rest of Canada.

So you are arguing that wasteful systems are better because they consume more money? From what I have read there is little or no correlation between the amount spent per student and better outcomes.

If you look at the drop out rate BC has the lowest in the country - despite the lower per student spending:

http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/89-503-x/2010001/article/11542/tbl/tbl006-eng.htm

Edited by TimG

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Which question do you want answered? Why do you support neo-liberals who are out to destroy public education. Maybe you should go back to school and learn some social justice. You're views are of the past. and you are wrong. The Green party will support the BCTF and negotiate in good faith if they get in. The courts rules against the Liberals. What more do you need to see? The courts ruled in favor of the BCTF and from what I'm reading I'd say about 85%of the public is with the BCTF and against the neo-liberals.

Also, people blame teachers for problems in public education, but the biggest problem is inequality.

Also, the BCTF is reaching out to parents to tell them what is really happening. You want to believe neo-libs, then that's your problem.

Read this and maybe yo will understand. http://www.bctf.ca/uploadedFiles/Public/Parents/ParentLetterJobAction_en.pdf

You will never sell this as a class warfare issue. The majority of people just don't buy it. Best to just stick with the contract issues.

Edited by Wilber

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You will never sell this as a class warfare issue. The majority of people just don't buy it. Best to just stick with the contract issues.

True. BC teachers are among the lowest paid in Canada. Per pupil funding in MC is 2nd lowest in Canada. BC class sizes are too large with all the needy learners. The public knows it is the kids who are been negatively affected. Neo-libs are hell bent on destroying public education.

This explains it. http://www.teachersolidarity.com/sites/teachersolidarity/files/research/Neoliberalism_and_Ed_Reform_CompleteProofs.pdf

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True. BC teachers are among the lowest paid in Canada. Per pupil funding in MC is 2nd lowest in Canada. BC class sizes are too large with all the needy learners. The public knows it is the kids who are been negatively affected. Neo-libs are hell bent on destroying public education.

This explains it. http://www.teachersolidarity.com/sites/teachersolidarity/files/research/Neoliberalism_and_Ed_Reform_CompleteProofs.pdf

You should go easy on the labels. This is the elected government. Label it and you make the people who voted for it think you are labeling them as well. That won't help you.

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True. BC teachers are among the lowest paid in Canada. Per pupil funding in MC is 2nd lowest in Canada. BC class sizes are too large with all the needy learners. The public knows it is the kids who are been negatively affected. Neo-libs are hell bent on destroying public education.

This explains it. http://www.teachersolidarity.com/sites/teachersolidarity/files/research/Neoliberalism_and_Ed_Reform_CompleteProofs.pdf

OK, hands up everyone who read all 318 pages of Socialist's reference material. C'mon, can I get a show of hands. Anyone? One person? Socialist, did you at least read it? I will be first to admit to reading about 4 paragraphs and when the tears of laughter made it impossible to see the screen anymore, I gave up. Good lord, has anyone outside of North Korea ever read this entire paper?

OK, I take all of the blame for Socialist thinking that 318 pages of Marxist drivel was a relevant source of information. I mocked him for using cartoons as his source of cited reference, so I guess I kind of forced him into this. I feel really bad.

On the plus side there my young Socialist friend, as was so often the case, Sir Winston pretty much nailed your situation perfectly when he said, and I paraphrase, If you are not a socialist when you are under 30, then you have no heart. If you are still a socialist when you are over 30, then you have no brain. By your photo, I would say there is still hope for you.

Edited by Pct2017

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OK, hands up everyone who read all 318 pages of Socialist's reference material. C'mon, can I get a show of hands. Anyone? One person?

Yes...I read the table of contents and focused in on the Marxism chapter. Party over comrade.

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