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Teachers Vote Underway

By 250 News

Tuesday, March 04, 2014 12:25 PM

Prince George, B.C.- Teachers across the province are into  the first of three days of voting  on  strike action  to back their bargaining  team.

There are about 41 thousand  teachers  across BC who are eligible to vote,   of that  number, about 1,000 of them are  employed by School District 57 at schools in  Prince George, Mackenzie, McBride and Valemount.

Prince George District Teachers Association President Tina Cousins says there are ballot boxes in each and every public school in  SD 57,  and  ballots are also being  cast at the  PGDTA office. 

Cousins says she has toured many schools during  January, “We believe our teachers are very concerned about the  state of things in the public schools.  We have been hearing a lot of  worries about funding.”

She thinks the teachers will vote in favour of supporting their bargaining team “Hopefully  we won’t have to strike, but if we have a strong strike vote,  we hope that will  provide  enough pressure to get some  results at the bargaining table.”

Results of the vote are to be released  Thursday  evening around 9:30.   If  the  vote is in favour of  job action,  teachers would have 90 days in which to  act.  


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Comments

“We believe our teachers are very concerned about the state of things in the public schools. We have been hearing a lot of worries about funding.”

I find her quote interesting. How does increasing teacher's wages, benefits and vacation time help the kids?

I'm all for paying them well but I really wish they'd stop pretending they're doing this for the kids.
"We won't go on strike, we just need a strong strike mandate to apply pressure" - said every union boss before every strike...
I recently came across some very old photo albums, one of which contained my Grade 2 class picture. My class was made up of 28 students! Not sure where my other old class photos are, but I remember fairly large class sizes.

The BCTF argues that they need smaller class sizes because of current class composition issues, however I can honestly say that my Elementary School buddies and I were definitely not a group of darling little angels, haha!

As demographics shift, we are seeing and will continue to see a reduction in the number of young children entering their school years. This change means that there will be fewer students and should also mean that fewer teachers will be required.

The BCTF's response is to fight for smaller class sizes. But are smaller class sizes all about keeping as many teachers employed as possible. After all, these "BCTF" teachers all pay Union dues!!

If student numbers continue to drop, will we see the BCTF argue for further class size reductions, perhaps until we reach 1 teacher for every 2 or 3 students? After all, that will allow for much more one-on-one time with the teacher!! Hey, it's all about the kids! Isn't it??

The cynic in me thinks that this is all about keeping as many teachers employed and paying union dues as posssible! After all, the Union is just a big business that thrives on having as many customers as possible. In the BCTF's case, their customers are employed teachers, teachers that are paying union dues!!
Meh, my support is with the proven winners; the teachers. Every action they take, and every decision they have made, has been upheld by our justice system.

Any government (employer) actions taken, and decisions made, are consistently has been admonished by the courts as being unconstitutional, and illegal.

I actually feel sorry for this Lib-Con government, they continue to get their a$$es kicked by the courts, and now the BCTF is going to take it's turn. Like I said before, this is like watching a one-legged person in a a$$ kicking contest. Thanks for wasting our money and time on this matter Lib-Cons!
Hart guy you don't know any teachers on a personal level do you? I do and it's quite an eye opener past the headlines.

How come universities are not scrutinized like the schools from the media?
Same here seamut. Many of the comments above are a clear indication why unions are still required in this country.

How many of you anti union whiners realize that the BCTF is actually the teachers themselves? The way you talk you'd think the BCTF was an alien entity. Thank goodness you all aren't running this country.
Actually seamut, I have many, many personal friends and family members who are teachers. In fact, my dearest, closest and best friend is a teacher as was her husband (he is now a secondary school Vice Principal).

The one thing that the vast majority of my teacher friends and family have in common is their desire to teach, to teach without the influence of the BCTF. They recognize that they make a good living and enjoy great benefits! They recognize that they have a very good pension! They recognize that they are very well off, when compared to many other segments of the working population.

They almost to a person, wish that they were not forced to be a BCTF member! Many also do not support the NDP!! This probably stems from the fact that most of them are northerners and want little to do with the whining and complaining coming out of Vancouver and Victoria! "leave us alone and let us teach!" is a regular comment from them. Perhaps a lot of this comes from most of them being married to or having family members who are hard working resource sector free enterprise thinkers!!

This is an interesting topic, in this district, it's not unusual to have a teacher, teaching a class they know very little about. Case in point: grade ten math. It's my personal experience that a teacher teaching a math class who knows little or anything about the class they are teaching has a great deal of students who are failing the class. Parent teacher meets proved the point to me. Here is a gym filled with parents and tables for each teacher in the school. very few of the tables has line ups to speak to the teacher about the parent's children, except for this one teacher doing the grade ten math class. The longest line up in the gym. Here sits this once upon a time sport star, flashing his ring like the Pope, and telling folks there kids are failing his math class. Gee I wondered why.

After speaking to my child about her class and doing some digging I discover this clown doesn't teach math, he should be teaching gym. But for an extra $6000.00 he can teach a class and make some extra money, all at the expense of the kids time and futures. Needless to say my child took the summer class and passed math 10 with a "B" average, because the class was taught by, oh my gosh, a math teacher! The idiot I spoke of left the active teaching post, thank the heavens, to be a pin head for the local teachers union. At least there he can't damage a child's ambition or future.

I don't buy into this issue of class size, it's BS, I remember having 28 to 32 kids in a class and we all passed our classes. This is using the kids as an excuse for lousy teaching and poor class testing averages. It's not the kids fault, it's the lack of commitment on the part of some (not all) the teachers and the school districts and the stupid policies they adopt. Let's put the blame where it lies, square on the two front line groups responsible for this mess, the school districts and the teachers in those districts.
Peeps, you still here?

I thought you were supposed to leave us for good a few weeks ago, when you got your own A$$ severely kicked on this site??

Sigh, if only!!
Good comments Professional!

By the way, if the teacher you are talking about is the one that I believe that you are talking about, I wholeheartedly agree with your comments. I have had the wonderful privilege to communicate with this twit and was amazed at the level of stupidity in someone who is supposed to be teaching "our" children! This person comes by it honestly though, his Daddy was also a whiny teacher!
Thanks Hart Guy, nice to know I am not alone.
Professional states; "very few of the tables has line ups to speak to the teacher about the parent's children, except for this one teacher doing the grade ten math class. The longest line up in the gym."

Thank you for such a glowing positive evaluation of our education system and the teachers in general in this school district. "Every few tables has lineups" means most all, except for one teacher are doing an excellent job!

I will pass this good news comment on to the Prince George District Teacher's Association… again thank you Professional :-)
I thought maybe I imagined it, so I looked back at old class photos, and we had 35 kids in my grade 3 class. Be interesting to get some info on what's happened between now and then. My class was quite homogeneous, all white kids who spoke English as a first language, now classes are comprised of different ethnic backgrounds, not all kids speak English at the same level, some kids are special needs, some are disturbed, some their parents don't give a crap and the school is just a babysitting service. And with what seems more parents streaming their kids to private schools, home school etc,. the talent pool in the class is thinning. I fear the answer to the problem is not politically palatable, so the children we all claim to care about so much, will get a substandard education because no one wants to stay the truth that not all kid are the same, and you have to segment them in order for each group to be able to achieve their potential - and by segment, I don't mean by race, I mean by learning ability.
The teachers can't trust this government. That has been proven numerous times. Ripping up the contract, the gov losing in court), over crowding the classrooms, cutting back teachers aids.. The list goes on..
So Hart Guy where did those benefits come from, out of the goodness of the governments heart?

That grade ten math teacher may have been assigned that class against his will. I know a teacher who was forced to teach math and science which where not her specialty.

Back in my school days one got the strap or a book over the head for misbehaving, so easier to keep a class in line then, let alone the special needs and English as a second language students all mixed in these days.

Give it a try Hart Guy, show them how its done. Hey what do you think of those juicy contracts the profs up the hill get?
Children aren't disciplined any more so they go school and act like a$$holes and the teachers have no power to make them behave.

Of course the teachers can't deal with class sizes. Blame this completely on parents.
People#1, Go for it, the district knew they screwed up assigning this moron to that class. He knew he screwed up but let's not mention that too loudly, move along, move along, nothing to see here. Six grand is a hell of an incentive for an our of one's time....(against there will...really???) Mom's the word.
Professional:
I think she might e failing because he has you genes.
I do know where you came up with an extra six grand.
I don't believe teaches are paid any extra to teach a particular class.
My sympathy is more with a teacher who has to deal with an unpleasant people like you or Hart Guy.
Your use of twit and moron is a true irony.
Vote to strike teachers. I think you have the support of more parents than you realize. The BC Liberal government is singlehandedly destroying the education system in this province and most people aren't willing to stand up to fix the problem, because it might cost them that next big screen tv. I guess kids really aren't people's highest priority. Sad.

Pay no attention to the angry little trolls either that want to scratch and claw at your pay and benefits, because they're angry about the state of their own lives. Your wages have been on a backwards slide for over 10 years now. We all know what happens in an environment like that. The people who're mobile and able, will move on, leaving behind the people stuck in the education system with fewer options and large chips on their shoulders. The kids always pay in a race to the bottom.

When your own government continually disregards the law of the land, it's time to dig in your heals and fight, no matter the cost. Please fight.

I have to agree with Professional's comments. My kids had a very weak math teacher who I knew was not a trained math teacher. I taught them myself in the evenings.
Just read that Jim Sinclair of the BCFed and other Union leaders are meeting in Victoria and have called on the BC government to raise the minimum wage to $13 an hour.

That's a 26.8% increase!

I'm sure that the BCTF will be pleased with this news and will now present their latest contract demands which will be at least this much!!

Taxpayyerteacher:
Good for you helping your kids.
I believe that Math is a subject that requires homework if you want to be successful. A student can't expect to get good marks in it if he or she spends the evening texting, posting on facebook, playing video games or watching TV.
Then their parents can line up on visit the teachers night and complain that it's his fault kids aren't doing well in math.
That's about their only contribution to their kids education.
I have to agree with karrman also......epidemic...poor parenting, kids never doing assignments and going to bed after midnight.....parents and public think teachers should be nannies.
taxpayerteacher, we must keep in mind that approximately 30 years ago, it was teachers and social workers who encouraged a system where children would be allowed more freedom to do what they wanted to do! This had a marked effect on the behavior of children. We now have raised and continue to raise children who have entrenched within them a sense of self-entitlement, a desire to do what they want to do, whenever they want to do it without any consequences for the outcomes. We have children who are no longer held accountable for their efforts or lack of efforts. We have school and sport competitions where everybody is a participant and they are all winners! We don't declare anyone the loser, whether in sports or in class as to do so might harm the child's self-esteem!

It was teachers and social workers and their ilk that fought for this over the past 30 years or so! Now they are complaining while they reap what they have sown! Be careful what you wish for!! Hard to have sympathy for the teachers!!
Complete BS Hart Guy, the only ones to blame for children who are raised with a sense of "self-entitlement" are their parents, NOT teachers and social workers!

What a distorted and ignorant view you have on so many things that are truly important, in and to our society. I am so thankful people like you are not running our government….? Wait a minute… hey… people like you are running our government, which is why our children's education is so undervalued, and teachers are treated with such contempt, guess it's time for a change!!!
Hart Guy, I don't agree with your claim that "approximately 30 years ago, it was teachers and social workers who encouraged a system where children would be allowed more freedom to do what they wanted to do!"

taxpayerteacher's comment made the point that many parents are not involved in their kids' education.
Society has certainly changed where today both parents work and more and more kids are left to muse themselves,
particularly i their teen years.

"We now have raised and continue to raise children who have entrenched within them a sense of self-entitlement" Are you implying that parents are doing a poor job of raising their children or have abdicated their parental responsibilities and turned them over to teachers?

Hart Guy.....take responsibility for how you instill a work ethic in your children that you have put into society and quit blaming teachers and social workers. I recall a local sports club where the "town liberals" patronized..... give a trophy to a kid who didnt win the competion!!! Why?? Because the whiny, poor sport parents were club members and local hoity toities and they wanted their kid to have the trophy. How do I know this? Because my kid won the competition and there was never any dispute about my kid's win. So. years later my kid is a doctor and the kid whose parents demanded that he/she receive the trophy....is a bar hop....counting cremos....just like Christy Clark was before she maneuvered into politics!
So taxpayerteacher, what I hear you saying is that the children of 25 or 30 years ago are now parents of the kid that you are talking about? That's exactly my point. Children of 25 or 30 years ago who were raised with the notion that the world owes them a living, nothing is their fault, no one is a winner or a loser, are now parents themselves!

karrman, as far as implying that parents are doing a poor job of raising their children or have abdicated their parental responsibilities and turned them over to teachers, would you not agree that our system has taken away parental powers from the parents? Try to punish your child and just watch social services come in and take you children away. Reprimand your child, take away their privileges, ground them, etc! All reasons for your child to complain to social services who will then be more than happy to come and take your children away from you!

Our children today are more than cognizant to the fact that their parent's have very little control over them!!

Peeps, if anybody has a distorted sense of reality, it would be you! Good god, it might actually be frightening if you actually had a clue!! I could waste a few more breaths on you, but I am more that certain that you are just a waste of oxygen!!
My kid is 27!
Another round of high paying teachers crying they are so poor they need a massive pay raise. I am glad I do not live close to my brother (who is a teacher) to hear his ranting about it.
Just business as usual for the teachers. Another year, another strike vote and claims of 'underfunding'. By underfunding, they are of course talking about wages and benefits for the teachers.

Get ready to pay up, taxpayers of BC, the teachers are going to be asking for a lot this time around.
@hart gal states; "Reprimand your child, take away their privileges, ground them, etc! All reasons for your child to complain to social services who will then be more than happy to come and take your children away from you!"

More words that reveal your ignorance hart gal; none of those are reasons for a child protection worker to remove a child from a home.

Keep this up and no one will be taking your opinions seriously on this discussion board hart gal.
DPJ, congratulations to your brother on being a post secondary educated teacher. Your parents must be proud.

@JB; no, by underfunding they are talking about the lack of funding for special needs students, class sizes and class composition.

As far as us taxpayers getting ready to pay up, aren't we already going to be doing that through a $5 MILLION dollar court ordered payment awarded to the BCTF, because of our government's incompetence and negligence?
The only people that actually says "its all about the kids" are those trying to attack teachers. No teacher has said that. "Teacher working conditions are student learning conditions." Yet, for some reason, people keep spewing that. I blame this on coffee shop talk. One old guy says it and all the other old guys pass it on. Eventually they all just keep saying it and believe it to be fact.

The governments recent offer was 6% over 10 years. That is way below inflation. That equates to a pay cut.

http://www.bcbargaining.ca/content/1114/SEV46N01Dec_Jan.pdf

Take a look at that and see how much more the private sector gets compared to the public sector.


Correction: the government is being ordered to pay the BCTF $2 million in damages, not $5 million… sorry.
Peeps, here's another correction for you this evening! Man, you are really on a roll here tonight! Correction, correction, correction! Must be tough on a self-serving, narcissist like yourself!

For your information the government is NOT being ordered to pay the BCTF $2,000,000.00 or $5,000,000.00 in damages. At the current time, the government was granted a stay on the decision. So, how can they be ordered to pay anything if in fact the decision was stayed??

P.S. - My sister thinks you have a thing for her! Sorry to tell you, but she also thinks that you are bit of a Twit!!

Wow, guess I will have to explain to you what a "stay" is.

A "stay is the act of temporarily stopping a judicial proceeding through the order of a court.

Umm… did you get the part about "temporary"? It means they will still have to pay the BCTF $2 million in damages.
Not if the appeal is successful moonbat.
If the appeal isn't successful nimrod.
Poops, Peeps, whatever, you have stated that the Government "is" being ordered to pay, but at this point in time the Government is not being ordered to pay! What part of "stay" do you not understand??

And as dow7500 says, the Government will not have to pay if the appeal is successful.

Poops,oops Peeps, your hatred for the Government is preventing you from having any objective thoughts! Actually, are you even capable of objective thoughts??? With you it's always "the sky is falling, the sky is falling", haha!

Don't let the falling sky hit you on the head and don't let the door hit you on your butt when you pack up and leave our wonderful province and our amazing country! Have you found another country willing to have you yet??

You have been on this site a lot longer than I have Hart Guy, and everyone can see the change in your commenting behaviour. I regard you as nothing more than a Troll, and will not engage you in any more debate. You are a waste of my intellect and time.
OMG, it worked!!
Ha, ha, ha!
Hey, Hart Guy, don't worry about being labelled a troll by Peeps. Anyone who challenges his or he ideas is labelled a troll... which is pretty much 90% of the people who comment on this site. Welcome to the club!
Thanks JB! I didn't sleep well last night. Must have had something to do with being labelled a troll by the illustrious Peeps!

Actually, I slept like a baby! Love cranking that twit up, haha! I've told Peeps many times that I consider Peeps to be this sites "bully". I don't like bullies and I love taking them to task! Peeps reactions are always exactly what I expected! Bullies are so predictable!

Have a nice day, one and all, even you Peeps!!