Fill these Shoes with Teachers

October 4, 2011

Fill these Shoes with Teachers

There are more than 346 teachers missing from Surrey classrooms this year. That’s nearly three teachers per school. “These teachers would be in Surrey classrooms today if the government had remedied the illegal legislation enacted in 2002,” said Denise Moffatt, President of the Surrey Teachers’ Association. “Just imagine the difference more than 346 teachers would make to students.”

To symbolize the impact of these cuts to service, the Association asked each school to send in three pairs of shoes and their wish for the teachers who would fill them. On October 5th, 2011, World Teachers’ Day, the Surrey Teachers’ Association will be holding a press conference in front of the District Education and Conference Centre at 3:30pm. The unfilled shoes will be displayed at the event.

“In addition to regular classroom teachers, schools have requested counselors, ESL teachers, learning specialists, teacher librarians, speech and language pathologists, and other specialist teachers.” 262 specialist teachers are among those that have been cut from Surrey schools. “Predictably, schools have asked for the return of those same teachers that were cut in 2002,” said Moffatt. “It is a sign that the legislation that is in place today is not working”

In Surrey, some specialist services have received a double cut. For example, learning specialist teachers are not replaced for several days if they are absent. “That means these students lose service just because their teacher is ill,” said Moffatt. “How is not replacing these teachers in the best interest of students?”

Government spending is about priorities. The BC Liberal government has made tax cuts for corporations a priority over public education. “This is a sign of misplaced priorities and short-sightedness,” said Moffatt. “In other provinces, like Alberta, Saskatchewan and Ontario, they are making public education a priority. They understand it is an investment in the future of their province with long term and lasting benefits.“

“It is time for the BC government to cut the rhetoric and sufficiently fund public education. It is time for government to fill these empty shoes,” concluded Moffatt.

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For more information, contact Denise Moffatt at 604-594-5353.

Tuesday, October 4th, 2011. Filed in Category: Bargaining Media News Releases