Monday Memo – January 18, 2016

MEMO TO: Staff Rep
COPIES TO: STA Executive Committee
FROM: Laura Barker, STA First Vice President
Date: January 18, 2016

January 20 STA Special General Meeting at Bombay Banquet Hall – Election of STA Delegates for the BCTF’s 2016 Annual General Meeting
Concerned about government decisions affecting public education? Interested in seeing the democratic processes of the BCTF? This is your opportunity. Spend four days of your Spring Break (March 12 – 15) in Vancouver at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, with 700+ delegates from around the province (hotel accommodation and expenses are covered by the BCTF).
50+ delegates will be elected at the January 20 General Meeting at the Bombay Hall. We also elect alternate delegates at that meeting to ensure maximum participation. Names submitted past our printing deadline last week have been included in the revised document attached. To have your name printed on Wednesday’s ballot, your name must be submitted to our receptionist Carly Coupe ( by 4pm Tuesday January 19.
If you are interested in becoming a delegate, you may submit your name from the floor at the January 20 meeting.

The STA helps delegates and alternates to prepare for the event by holding several important advance meetings to discuss the resolutions: February 24 (4pm-6pm), March 2 (8am-3:30pm), March 9 (4pm-6pm). We also have a training session that is just for rookie delegates (February 12, 12 pm- 3:30 pm).

*NOTE: Policies and Procedures 1.E.14: THAT delegates and alternates to the BCTF AGM should attend all pre-AGM meetings of the delegation. If a delegate or alternate misses 2 or more meetings without informing the chairperson of the delegation, he/she will be dropped as a delegate or alternate.
Dates for this year’s training sessions for both delegates and alternates are as follows: February 24 (4pm-6pm), March 2 (8am-3:30pm), March 9 (4pm-6pm). Rookie session (February 12, 12 pm- 3:30 pm).

Attention All STA Staff Reps & Pro-D Reps!
Staff Reps and Pro-D Reps, please register for the BCTF’s new union rep training workshop “Education Change: The Big Picture.” Select ONE of the following dates to attend together if possible: January 19th, 20th, 21st, 26th, 27th or 28th. Please use the Eventbrite link to register for the session that works best for you. (Note: A few staff reps have had trouble selecting the proper Collective Agreement Article when booking the LOA online. It is likely because you are selecting “STA Business” for your leave. Please select “STARA” as your option, and you will then find the correct leave article.)

February 19 Focus Day: Registration opens Tuesday, January 19th

The STA and the district have planned a Focus Day on the theme of “Exploring Identity” for our next professional development day, February 19th. Registration will open at 8 am on Tuesday morning, January 19th. There are a limited number of workshops available, so register early, first come, first served! Other professional development opportunities are listed on the Surrey Teachers homepage at

April 18th Curriculum Implementation Day
April 18th will be Surrey’s second curriculum implementation day. Like November 12th, the day will be a non-instructional day for the purpose of working on curriculum implementation activities, and as such, it is not a professional development day nor is it an admin-directed non-instructional day. The STA/SD36 Curriculum Implementation Committees are drafting a short Survey Monkey to get feedback from teachers on their needs/interests for the day, and we hope to send that out in the next few days.

BCTF/SFU Survey: Violence Against BC Teachers
In December you may have received a survey from Simon Fraser University and the BCTF inviting you to complete a survey on your experiences of workplace violence and bullying during your career as a teacher. If you have not yet completed the survey but still wish to participate, please click on the link to access the survey before January 25. Participation is entirely voluntary and all information you provide will remain confidential. The survey takes 30 minutes and can be completed from any location using a computer connected to the Internet.

STA New Teachers’ Induction and Conference — Friday, March 4, 2016
Beginning teachers in their first or second year of contract teaching are warmly invited to attend the STA’s upcoming New Teachers’ Conference and Induction Ceremony. Join us for this day-long workshop to learn more about important issues facing new teachers, supports available, the collective agreement, and your legal responsibilities and rights as a teacher. Details on how to register are on the attached poster (release time and lunch are provided). Please alert beginning teachers on your staff of this upcoming STA event. (Note: There will be a similar event in the spring for TTOCs who do not yet have a teaching contract.) We look forward to meeting you!

CUPE Caretaker Work
Some schools are directing staff and students to clean up after user groups, etc. These are jobs that typically our CUPE colleagues would be doing. This is a friendly reminder that those jobs belong to CUPE 728 members, and to please call the STA if you are unsure about proper procedures regarding custodial work.

Speaking out for Public Education:
Thursday, the Supreme Court of Canada announced that it would hear the BCTF’s appeal in the Bill 28/Bill 22 case! “It’s been 14 years since the original unconstitutional legislation that stripped our collective agreements, but B.C. teachers are still very committed to our efforts to win back those important working conditions for teachers, which are also our students’ learning conditions,” said BCTF president Jim Iker, in a news release. You can share more about this on social media by posting the following Article published in the Times’ Columnist.

“Justice to Go” Film Review: Pride
The STA’s International Solidarity Committee maintains an excellent collection of DVDs on various social justice issues for teachers to use in the classroom or for their own edification. Surrey teachers may request to borrow them by going to to browse all our films. It will then be delivered to your mailbox at your school! At first glance, the title of this film, “Pride”, suggests that it will explore issues surrounding homophobia. While these issues are part of this true story, set in the United Kingdom during the Thatcher union busting era of the nineteen eighties, they are certainly not front and centre. When a group of London-based gay men and lesbians decide to show support for striking coal miners in a small Welsh village, they first gain the trust of their polar opposites. Together, the groups mobilize and take action to give support to the miners who are being starved out by the government. Telling a story filled with hope, this film emphasizes the power of friendship and solidarity. This is a film that would be appropriate for any secondary social justice class or club.

Calendar events:
January 19 – Staff Rep Training, Eaglequest Golf Centre
January 19 – STA Executive Committee Meeting, STA Office
January 20 – Staff Rep Training, Eaglequest Golf Centre
January 20 – Special General Meeting, Bombay Banquet Hall
January 21 – Staff Rep Training, Eaglequest Golf Centre
January 26 – Staff Rep Training, Eaglequest Golf Centre
January 27 – Staff Rep Training, Eaglequest Golf Centre
January 28 – Staff Rep Training, Eaglequest Golf Centre
January 29-30 – BCTF Representative Assembly

Monday, January 18th, 2016. Filed in Category: Monday Memos

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