Monday Memo – June 6, 2017

MEMO TO:  Staff Reps
COPIES TO:  STA Executive Committee
FROM:  Gioia Breda, President
Date: June 6, 2017


New faces at the STA
We have recently hired an office manager here in the STA office, and we are thrilled that we have an extra set of hands now to help us tackle all the work done at the STA. Please join us in welcoming Carolyn Saxby, our new office manager. We will also soon be hiring a replacement clerical staff person for Lorna Sheh who is on leave; and as you all know, STA members will also be electing a Pro D officer in June. Extra officers and staff in the office will greatly help us tackle our workload and do the proactive work we all want to do. We appreciate your patience over the past year as we worked through the decision and hiring processes, and moving forward as we implement new processes and get our new staff trained in the work done at the STA.

Bill 22: Class Size Consultations re Compensation
Teachers who had over-sized classes this year are receiving notices regarding consulting with administration about the classes, and about compensation to be provided under current legislation. (This compensation regime only applies to this year; next year any violations of class size and composition will be dealt with as remedies under the Memorandum of Agreement with the government.) The BCTF has taken a formal position that members should not accept “cash for kids” (i.e. straight compensation to the teacher). Instead, our advice is to select one of the other forms of compensation:

  • additional preparation time
  • an additional professional development allowance
  • an additional allowance for classroom supplies and equipment

If you have any questions please contact

STA Special General Meeting: 4:00, June 14th, Eaglequest Golf Centre
We will be holding a Special General Meeting to conduct elections for our two new Executive Committee positions at a Special General Meeting to be held immediately before the STARA meeting on June 14th:

Professional Development Officer:

  • This is a full-time released position, with a term of one year.
  • Responsibilities will include professional development, the STA Convention, job shares, representing members in investigations, and other tasks assigned by the President or Executive Committee.

Member at Large:

  • This position will have the same rights and responsibilities as the other Member at Large positions, but it is designated for a member who self-identifies as an Aboriginal person. Candidates will confirm that they meet this criterion at the time of nomination.

Candidates for Professional Development Officer will be able to make a speech of up to 2 minutes at the meeting. Candidates for Member at Large will be able to make a speech of up to 1 minute at the meeting.

If you would like more information about these positions, please contact our President, Gioia Breda, at

**Candidates interested in running for either of these positions had to submit their candidate statements by 4:00, Tuesday, May 30, in order to be included in the package to be sent out to schools, but of course, members have the right to be nominated and stand for election at the meeting, as always, even if you missed the publication deadline. Please see the attached document with candidate statements.

STARA meeting, June 14th following our Special General Meeting
As at every June STARA (STA Representative Assembly), we will be electing the members of the STA Standing Committees for next year. If you are interested in joining a committee, please feel welcome to submit your name in advance (to and come to the meeting to get elected! By the way, all school reps are especially encouraged to attend the meeting, as we offer our wonderful appreciation dinner for all reps (staff reps, Pro D reps, H&S reps, Social Justice reps, and all members of all STA committees) following the meeting. You wonderful people are the ones who go the extra miles to serve your colleagues, and you really are the heart of the union! You deserve some TLC this time of the year!

NDP/ Green agreement
At long last we have some information about what the Green-NDP proposed government might mean to public education. Take a look at the whole agreement here.

In particular it is interesting to note the following details in the agreement that pertain to K-12 and Adult Ed:

  • Invest  over four years to support co-op, apprenticeship and work experience programs for high-school and undergraduate students.
  • Restore funding to Adult Basic Education and English language learning.
  • Fast track enhancement to K-12 education funding to restore faith in public schools after a decade and a half of a government that shortchanged a generation of students.
  1. Priorities for funding include early intervention and Healthy Starts programs.
  2. Review the funding model for the K-12 education system with a view to ensuring equitable access for students.

Speaking up and out for public education!
Here are articles outlining the limbo that we find ourselves in as we wait for a new government to form.

Self-Assessment of the Core Competencies
We are hearing from Grade 8 and 9 teachers with concerns about self-assessment of the core competencies. Please remember that although there is a requirement to have a student self-assessment of at least one core competency attached to the year-end report, there is no particular requirement on its form or content. Some secondary schools have developed some resources and lessons that teachers may choose to use to facilitate the self-assessment, but it is not required that you use the forms or content developed at your school. Teachers have professional autonomy to facilitate a self-assessment in a way that is most meaningful for them and their students. Please read the attached BCTF Educational Change Bulletin for further information. In many ways, the advice in this BCTF bulletin aligns with the district’s advice, which can be found here:

The STA’s Aboriginal Education Committee is proud to present its 2nd Annual Aboriginal Day Celebration!
Come out and celebrate National Aboriginal Day. We really want to see lots of teachers there!
Date: Thursday June 22nd, 2017
Time: 3:30 pm to 7:30 pm
Place: REC, Room 304 (next to DEC)
Traditional Performances, food and teachings
Chief Harley Chappell, speaking on Semiahmoo First Nation history
To register go to:

Opportunity for DL teachers
A fascinating opportunity is open for a Task Force on Distributed Learning – see description at

We would like to see Surrey teachers active in committees and task forces at the BCTF level, so if you are interested, please apply, and let us know you have done so!

Employment opportunity at the BCTF
Assistant Director, PQT/Professional Support Co-ordinator Full-time term position (5 years) for more info see the description at this link:

Status of Women Committee Anti-Violence training – June 15th:
At Beecher Place (12160 Beecher Street, Crescent Beach) from 12:00 pm to 2:30 pm.  See attached poster  There are only 10 spots available, so register early at this Eventbrite link

Health and Wellness Event:
June 15th is the date for our next Wellness Event. Come to Beecher Place to enjoy the beautiful beach setting, discussion on Healthy and Balanced Living, Yoga, and a video on Health and Happiness. Everyone is welcome to come the event (see attached poster). A catered dinner will be served.  Go to this Eventbrite link to register!

Thursday, June 8th from 3:30 pm to 5:00 pm
Presenter/Facilitator:  Jennifer Harder
Come and make a string art project that is doable with primary students.  This is a make and take session.  All materials will be supplied.  Try some ADST challenges, and brainstorm with colleagues for ADST activities that are appropriate for our K – 3 students.  Register at

Surrey Pride Festival at Holland Park – Sunday June 25th
The Surrey Teachers’ Association has been a proud sponsor of the Surrey Pride Festival for the last few years. We will have some fun swag and great draw prizes for kids or classroom teachers. Please come to our booth and say hello!
The festival is from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm at Holland Park (13428 Old Yale Rd, Surrey, BC).
Please note that Holland Park has limited parking. What to wear to a Pride event? Colourful is great! But you, just as you are, are fantastic too! Parking on the neighborhood streets is preferable. Parking at the mall is under your own risk.
*If there are Surrey Teachers who have an hour or two to staff the STA Pride booth from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm, please contact Gioia (
See the following link for more info on the Surrey Pride Festival, Sunday June 25, 2017:

New TTOCs Conference and BCTF Induction Ceremony on Thursday, June 22nd
Where: At the STA Office (9030 King George Blvd)
When: 8:30 am to 2:45 pm
Please register through this Eventbrite link –
LOA information is as follows:
If you would normally TTOC on this day, please submit a paper LOA to Ray Prosser at the District Office.  Use Article G. 7 – “TTOCs conducting union business”
(every school office should have these paper LOA forms available)
Details: STA New TTOCs Conference
Cost of TTOC to be borne by: STA
Attention: Laura Barker

Joke of The Week
Q: What did the lifeguard say to the kid who peed in the pool?
A: Urine trouble!

This week’s joke was submitted by Drew Kowalenko. If you would like to participate in joke of the week, please submit a short, clean, (but not necessarily education-related) joke to Gioia Breda at . If your joke is drawn for publication, your name will then be entered into a draw for a gift card at the end of the month. May’s winner is Sapna Brar!  *Thanks for the jokes! Please keep them coming!

June 6 – Executive Committee meeting (including Committee Chairs)
June 7 – Grievance committee meeting
June 7 – Anti-Poverty committee meeting
June 8 – Awards Committee meeting
June 9 – Aboriginal Education committee meeting
June 9 – STA Retirement Dinner & Dance
June 13 – Executive Committee meeting
June 14 – Special General meeting/STARA meeting
June 15 – Bargaining committee meeting
June 15 – Wellness event
June 19 – EI workshop for TTOCs
June 19 – International Solidarity Committee meeting
June 22 – New TTOCs Conference and BCTF Induction Ceremony
June 22 – Aboriginal Day Celebration
June 27 – Executive Committee meeting


Thursday, June 8th, 2017. Filed in Category: Monday Memos

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