Monday Memo – May 2, 2017

MEMO TO: Staff Reps
COPIES TO: STA Executive Committee
FROM: Gioia Breda, President
Date: May 2, 2017

Happy May Day to all workers! These are our hard-won rights:
Happy May Day

STA Convention: Friday May 5th
The Convention is this Friday! Catering numbers will be based on how many teachers have registered at each site, so if you haven’t yet registered, please do so now! Many workshops are full. Please do not attend a full workshop unless you have registered for it. There will be a list of “open” workshops posted at the sites on Friday. Parking will be very tight at the elementary and secondary sites. Please plan to carpool, take transit, or park a few blocks away and walk. See you at Convention!
All members are expected to attend the STA Convention, and we cannot approve PD funding applications for any other activities on the STA Convention Day.

One more Week before BC’s May 9th Election: Help Get out the Vote
Teachers Champion for Jinny Sims this Thursday:
Join Gioia Breda, STA President, & Irene Lanzinger, BC Fed President!
Calling all teachers to come out for an hour or two Thursday May 4 (5:00 pm to 8:00 pm) to help get out the vote in Surrey Panorama. We will be canvassing together to help get Jinny elected! Don’t worry if you haven’t done this before, information is provided and you work in teams. And if you stick around, we will go out for a bite afterward! Place: 6289 King George Blvd, Surrey, BC. RSVP: or 604-430-1421

For anyone who has not yet volunteered some time, or has an hour or two to give, check out these other Labour Canvas dates in which Irene Lanzinger, current BC Federation of Labour president (and another former BCTF president!) will be canvassing in the following neighbourhoods.

Delta North– Candidate: Ravi Kahlon Wednesday, May 3, 2017 (5:30 pm – 8:30 pm). Join Irene Lanzinger, President, BCFED, and members of UFCW and other unions. Place: 9263 120 Street, Delta, BC. RSVP: or 604-430-1421

Burnaby Lougheed–Candidate: Katrina Chen on Saturday, May 6, 2017 (10:00 am – 2:00 pm). Join Irene Lanzinger, President, BCFED. Place: 242-9855 Austin Ave, Burnaby, BC, inside Lougheed Mall. RSVP: or 604-430-1421

On May 9th, Tell Christy Clark it’s GAME OVER!
Check out and SHARE the BCFEd’s final video in the ‘Christy Clark’s Game Over series.’ In the final level of Christy Clark’s game, she stacks her war chest with corporate cash and taxpayer dollars on her way to Election Day. Vote on May 9th and tell Christy Clark it’s game over:

Early voting dates: May 3, 4, 5, 6
As you all know, the provincial election is May 9th. More and more people are exercising their right to vote on one of the early voting dates. This last weekend over 130,000 people in the province have already voted! You still have a chance to vote early May 3, 4, 5, and 6, so we encourage all teachers to do so. All of us know how busy a teacher’s day can be, and you don’t want to miss your chance to vote next Tuesday if something happens at school and you have to stay late!

One MORE STA’s Early-Voters Social!
Early Voters Social
All STA members welcome! Come and socialize with your STA colleagues after the STA Convention on Friday May 5, between 3:00 pm and 5:30 pm. Location Brewster’s Pub (7380 King George Hwy #700) . Appies for all STA members. Remember that early voting will be happening on May 3, 4 and 5 from 8 am to 8 pm. Show your BC Elections “I voted” sticker (or a selfie of yourself at your polling site) and also get a free beverage! Celebrate your participation in the democratic process! Please register using the EventBrite link:

Hey Secondary Teachers: Support First Time Student Voters with a Pizza Party!
If any teacher wishes to encourage 18-year-olds in your school to vote as first-time voters, and you would like to host an event to encourage them and celebrate afterward, please contact the STA with your plan and the date in advance so that we can support you with pizza for the students! Many schools are voting sites, and anyone can vote at any voting site. Email to make the request and to ensure funds are still available. (First come first served until the maximum is reached.)

End of School Year at Secondary Schools: Action for Staff Committees!
The STA has had numerous discussions with the District regarding how poorly the end of Semester 1 went at secondary schools, and what the end of this school year will look like. Although students are expected to attend school through June 28, there is flexibility about what sort of activities should take place, and principals have been directed to work through these issues collaboratively with their staffs to devise a plan that will work for each school. Please see the attached document for more information.

STA Annual General Meeting: Wednesday May 17th
The STA Annual General Meeting will be held on Wednesday, May 17th at the Bombay Banquet Hall from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm – with special guest BCTF President Glen Hansman. All members are encouraged to attend. We will be holding elections for Executive Committee positions, including table officer positions as well as the Resolutions Committee. The call for nominations ended last week but STA members can also run for all positions from the floor of the meeting. We will be sending out an agenda, candidate statements as well as some possible constitutional changes. We will also be adopting the STA budget for 2017-18, and setting the STA fee. If you require childcare, please email us at .

Supreme Court of Canada Rules, but BC Liberals continue to play funding games that may thwart restoration of our language!
The District needs 168 more classroom spaces but are only requesting 35 portables which means disruption to programs and service to students. We have been advocating in the media, with upper management, parent groups and most recently with our trustees. In our meetings with the School District we have learned that the Ministry has set up new hurdles to obtaining the funding needed to properly restore our language.

Districts needed to ensure that schools were FULLY utilizing ALL possible spaces.
Districts need to prove that any new temporary spaces (portables) could be occupied for the next FIVE years.
Districts needed to demonstrate that any needed portables would be able to be up and running by the START of SEPTEMBER (even though the Ministry may not approve those portables until early June making the task impossible as it takes months to get a portable ready to be onsite.)
For more information regarding the Ministry’s ridonculous requirements, check out Laura Barker’s article:

Election Photo Booth at Convention!
Convention Photo Booth
To help us get motivated to vote early and share the issues we care about most, we are hosting a social media booth at the convention main sites. Come and take a selfie holding a sign saying what matters to you in the provincial election! Post on social media to connect with and encourage others to be informed, and to vote in this election! Let’s share the education views and issues of the citizen-voter-teachers of Surrey!


“Audit-Proofing Workshop” for Administrators, May 15th.
Principals may be asking IST, Counsellors, BASES teachers and Psychologists to attend an “Audit Proofing workshop” after school on May 15th. Please remember that you are not required to attend this workshop, and we advise you to resist pressure from administrators to attend. We have been in discussions with the District on the matter of “encouraging” teachers to attend training sessions after school, and their position is that teachers assist with the creating of the safety plans but ultimately it is the principals and vice principals who are responsible for the “Audit Proofing.” Members are advised to think carefully about their workload when they are considering attending any after school training sessions offered by the district.

STA Retirement Dinner: Friday June 9, 2017
The STA Retirement Dinner will be held at the Guildford Sheraton Hotel on June 9th, 2017. Retiring members will be treated to a fabulous buffet dinner, as well as a dance with a live band and a special gift to thank you for your years as a member of the STA. If you are retiring by the end of this school year, please contact Donna Stewart at to get your invitation for you and one guest.. RSVPs are required.

L.A Matheson Celebrates their Pride and invites GSA sponsors and members to join them!
Celebrate Our PrideTo all GSA sponsors/coordinators in the Surrey School District, you and your students are invited to attend our Celebrate Our Pride GSA Dinner on May 18th during our Pride Week. Please RSVP to Annie Ohana at by May 16th !



Pride Prom June 1st Save the Date!
Attention all GSA sponsors, Pride Prom is back June first at Guildford Park Secondary. More information to come ASAP!
Pride Prom

TTOC Event: All TTOCs are invited to the STA’s annual TTOC New Teachers (Teaching on Call) Conference to be held mid-June.
Date and Details on registration coming soon!

Joke of The Week
Q:Bill Gates told Trump he would pay for ‘the wall’ on one condition..
A: It had to have windows in it.

This week’s joke was submitted by Cheryl Lightowlers. 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. Congratulations to April’s winner Jennifer Kimbley! *Thanks for the jokes! Please keep them coming!

Calendar of Events:
Reminder to all teachers – All STA meetings are open to members who are interested in attending. If you are thinking of getting involved, why not come and check out what is going on in our committees?

May 2 – Committee Chair meeting
May 2 – Executive & Committee Chair Liaison meeting
May 4 – Convention Committee meeting
May 4 – Aboriginal Education Committee meeting
May 5 – STA Convention
May 10 – Bargaining Committee meeting
May 11 – Status of Women/Girls Conference meeting
May 15 – Anti-Poverty Committee meeting
May 16 – Executive Committee meeting
May 17 – STA Annual General meeting
May 22 – Victoria Day
May 23 – International Solidarity Committee meeting
May 24 – Labour Affairs Committee meeting
May 25 – Local Reps meeting
May 26 – Aboriginal Education Committee meeting
May 29 – Status of Women Girls Conference
May 30 – Executive Committee meeting
June 5 – Bargaining Committee meeting

Tuesday, May 2nd, 2017. Filed in Category: Monday Memos

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