Peel Passages_ Fall 2004

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					Fall 2004            Peel Elementary Teachers’ Local                        V O L U M E     7   N U M B E R    1

In this issue...
                                         Politically Speaking
                                         by Cathy Smith, President
Politically Speaking . . 1                                       There’s a lot going on.        The public believes teachers inspire hard
Cathy Smith, President                                           One of the frustrating         work and life-long learning rather than
                                                                 parts of being presi-          specific skills.
Editorial . . . . . . . . . . . 2                                dent is that I seldom          The public believes students are better
Kurt Uriarte, 1st Vice President
                                                                 have a chance just to          prepared in math, science and technology
Wear Your Button . . . . 3                                       talk with members              than they were a generation ago.
Kurt Uriarte, 1st Vice President                                 about what is hap-             Most teachers believe their own
                                                                 pening in the federa-          assessments accurately measure student
Teachers Helping                                                 tion and how it                achievement. Only 34% of parents agreed.
Teachers: Why                                                    affects them. I will           80% of teachers gained their greatest
We Have ETFO . . . . . . 4               never have a chance to talk to everyone.               satisfaction as teachers “from helping
Tim Cunningham,                          Below is some information that I would like            students learn and grow.”
2nd Vice President                       share, personally, with all of you.                    The vast majority of teachers feel that their
                                                                                                greatest challenge as teachers is dealing
                                         College of Teachers                                    with the lack of planning time.
                                         At the May 2004 Representative Council of              Regarding the concern about the declining
                                         ETFO, the local presidents passed a motion             number of males in the profession, the vast
Collective Bargaining . . . . 6
                                         urging President Emily Noble “to write to the          majority said that the quality of the teacher
Status of Women . . . . . . 7            registrar of the Ontario College of Teachers to        was more important than the gender.
                                         demand that the annual fee be reduced.”                Teachers expressed increased confidence
Political Action . . . . . . . . 9       Following the September 30 – October 1,                in Ontario’s education system, but
Professional                             2004 meeting of the College’s governing                expressed little change in their confidence
Development . . . . . . . . . 10         council, a special meeting of the council was          in their profession, school or individual
                                         held to set the fee for 2005. Council set the          job.
Annual Meeting/                          fee and the pre-PLP level of $104, a $35               The public believed that there was little
Constitution. . . . .       . . . 14     reduction.                                             benefit to be gained by integrating special
                                             In a report to the Minister of Education,
Member at Large. . . . . . . 16                                                                 needs students into regular classrooms
                                         the College is recommending that the num-              while teachers believed that benefits
Anti-Racism/Equity. . . . . . 17         ber of positions for which OTF members are             accrued to both the special needs and non-
                                         eligible to seek election be 17 on a restruc-          identified students.
Awards & Recognition . . . 18            tured council of 33. This will give classroom
                                                                                                The majority of all respondents felt that
Occupational                             teachers 52% of the votes on the governing
                                                                                                classroom teachers should have increased
Health & Safety. . . . . . . . 20        council.
                                                                                                representation on the governing council
                                             In its 2005, post PLP budget, the College
                                                                                                and that supervisory officers and
                                         is projecting revenues of $24.5 million, down
EDUCATIONAL ISSUES                                                                              independent school representatives
                                         19.5% from 2003, and expenses of $26.6
                                                                                                should have less.
                                         million, down 12.6%. The College is still
Waste-Free Lunches:
                                         incurring PLP costs. It has not been able to
A Lesson in                              sublet the extra office space it leased to         Liberal Government’s Education
Environmental                            house the PLP staff and is still paying for        Commitments
Stewardship . . . . . . . . 21           their computers and furniture. Since 1997,         Before the October 2003 provincial election,
                                         College membership has increased 14%.              ETFO worked hard to establish good rela-
Getting a Read on                        Since 1997, expenses have increased 157%           tions with the Liberal and NDP caucuses. In
the Privatization                        and employee compensation has risen 152%.          2003-2004, the union maintained contact
of Education . . . . . . . . 23              Between July 5 and July 15, 2004 the           with MPPs and pressed the government to
                                         College surveyed 1000 teachers and 500             keep its education commitments. To con-
AROUND PEEL                              members of the public about their attitudes        tinue this positive relationship, ETFO is
                                         toward education. Some of the findings:            inviting CONTINUED ON PAGE 12
Junior Elementary

Music Makers . . . . . . . . . 25
Justice for The Hilton
Hotel Workers . . . . . . . . 26
Staff Lines . . . . . . . . . . . 27
                                                       Find out what it means to us!

                      ETFO Peel Local
                       Tel: (905)564-7233
                                                   get in touch                            ETFO Provincial
                                                                                         Tel: (416)962-3836
                       Fax: (905)564-7236           with your                          Toll Free: 888-838-3836
                     Toll Free: 877-772-3836
                         local union!                 
                                                                                     Peel Elementary Teachers’ Local

                                                                                     V O L U M E   7   N U M B E R      1

                                                                                                Fall 2004

Report cards are out and interviews are
over, so we can all breath easier and enjoy                                                 ETFO Peel Local
                                                                                          6435 Edwards Blvd. #5/6
the last few days before winter break.                                                      Mississauga, Ontario
                                                                                                Canada L5T 2P7
                                                                                            Tel: (905)564-7233
Hopefully we will all come back refreshed and ready for the New Year and to
                                                                                            Fax: (905)564-7236
start all over again in preparation for the second reporting period. We can only          Toll Free: 877-772-3836
hope that the next report card session will have less technical difficulties than
the last. Many sites in Peel had effective practices in place to help minimize the
stress and hardship inflicted upon teachers during this time, and we have
                                                                                       The opinions expressed in
recognized those sites in this issue of Peel Passages.                                   Peel Passages do not
                                                                                       necessarily reflect official
In keeping with the practice of highlighting important issues in education,
                                                                                       policy of ETFO Peel or the
                                                                                            Editorial Board.
Bernie Froese-Germain’s article on the privatization of education is an
interesting read about the realities of education privatization and 3P
partnerships around the globe. The PETL committees’ articles outline many
interesting workshops and events that they have organized and are available to             Managing Editor
                                                                                             Kurt Uriarte
Peel teachers.

                                                                                             Editing Team
Matthew Curran’s article on Labour Day is an excellent reminder of how the                  Sabina Freemantle
union movement has helped to reduce our workload and Sharron Raymond                         Matthew Curran
has pulled out an article from the archives to remind us that sometimes saying
                                                                                               Gail Novack

no is the only way an individual teacher can ensure a proper work life balance.
Both Tim Cunningham and Jay Fedosoff’s articles outline the importance of                  JBM Graphics Ltd.
union membership and the reality of getting involved for the first time. Cathy    
Smith, our President, is keeping us up-to-date about important union issues.
                                                                                          Design & Layout
                                                                                          Blind Pig Design
Have a great holiday break, you deserve it!

Sincerely,                                                                               Contributing Artist
                                                                                              Rick Taylor

                                                                                      Advertising Inquiries should be
                                                                                        directed to Kurt Uriarte at
Kurt Uriarte, Editor

2 | Peel Passages                                                                                           F A L L   2 0 0 4
                                                                                                     L O C A L        E X E C U T I V E

Wear Your Button for Respect
by Kurt Uriarte, First Vice President
                        The PETL release        would have improved working conditions            initiatives such as First Steps with the same
                        officers have been      and would not have cost them a cent. It           amount of planning time Peel teachers had
                        extremely busy          was simply a matter of will. Rather than          a decade ago?
                        visiting schools. It    ensuring that best practices were happen-             In this round of negotiations Peel
                        has been an impor-      ing in all Peel schools, the Board took the       ele men tar y tea che rs are see kin g 200
                        tant goal this year     position that it would not direct principals.     minutes/5-day cycle of planning time. Even
                        to get to every         The Board was willing to wait for princi-         with 200 minutes of planning time, per five
                        school in order to      pals to “buy in” to the list of best practices.   days, teachers will have to continue to
                        answer questions,       It would seem that the management rights          complete report cards on their personal
                        address the con-        of principals are more important to the           time and work hours at home planning and
cerns of teachers, as well as discuss current   Board than agreeing to ensure that best           marking. What 200 minutes does is dem-
negotiations. There are many important          practices are happening at every school.          onstrate respect for the wellness and
issues on the bargaining table. To put the          From the phone calls and stories we’ve        work-life balance of elementary teachers.
current round of negotiations into context,     heard during school visits, it is clear that      Going for a walk at lunch; going to bed
it is important to have an understanding of     the working conditions in Peel are still a        early, or eating more fish are great wellness
what happened during the last round of          priority for Peel teachers. As a young            tips from the Board but they are out of step
negotiations.                                   teacher explained, “While this Board is           with the realities of elementary teachers.
     In the last round of negotiations, Peel    striving for the future; I am trying to               The Ottawa Carlton Board has made
teachers made it very clear to the Collec-      survive in the present.” Improved working         elementary teachers and students a priority
tive Bargaining Committee (CBC) that their      conditions and respect are needed today.          by ensuring 200 minutes of planning time
working conditions were important.                  If student success truly is the Board’s       /5-day cycle for teachers. Ottawa receives
Because of the overwhelming demand for          ultimate goal, then having highly trained,        the same amount of money per pupil from
work-life balance in all                                                                                             the government as Peel
Peel schools, the CBC                                                                                                does under the funding
tabled language on such                                                                                              formula. So how does the
issues as: number of            The committee met, came to agreement                                                 Ottawa Board have
meetings per month;                                                                                                  money for 200 minutes
length of meetings; the         on many issues but the Board refused to                                              and not Peel? The answer
report cards process, cap                                                                                            is that Ottawa Carlton has
on supervision, length of              implement any of them.                                                        made planning time for
the school day and vio-                                                                                              elementary teachers a
lence in the classroom.                                                                                              priority. Ottawa Carlton
Presently a Peel teacher’s workload is          well-prepared teachers is a necessity to          has made student success a priority.
dependent on the principal. If your princi-     achieve it. Research clearly shows that the           On each school visit, the released
pal wants to give you 100 or 300 minutes        more time a teacher has to prepare units          officers have been distributing RESPECT
of supervision, she can. If a principal         and lessons, mark and evaluate students,          buttons. Teachers are legally permitted to
wants to call six meetings a month, he can.     the greater student achievement. The              wear these buttons. Often this theme
     Recognizing that it was important to       present amount of planning time (140              coincides with a school’s first rule; but
improve teachers’ workloads, the Local          minutes—the lowest in Ontario) is not             more importantly, the buttons are a sign
agreed to work collaboratively with the         sufficient to allow us to do our jobs.            that Peel teachers are resolved to achieve
Board and took these issues to a joint          Additi onal plann ing time only makes             respect for the valuable work they do on a
committee. The committee met, came to           sense. How are teachers supposed to               da il y b as is . Wear your button for
agreement on many issues but the Board          absorb new curriculum; learn complicated          RESPECT.
refused to implement any of them.               software programs at a single training
     Let’s be clear, the Board refused to       session; plan for, mark and evaluate
implement agreed upon best practices that       multiple learning intelligences; learn new

          RESPECT   It’s about time.
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L O C A L       E X E C U T I V E

Teachers Helping Teachers:
Why We Have ETFO
by Tim Cunningham, Second Vice President
                        The Elementary           protective services at Provincial ETFO, we                   in social justice issues and are continu-
                        Teachers’ Federa-        provide legal assistance and advice should                   ously working to promote diversity and
                        tion of Ontario          a member be in need of such assistance as                    equity. Through our local political action
                        (ETFO) is a profes-      a result of their professional duties. We                    committee, we liaise with Provincial ETFO
                        sional body of           offer this assistance and support for                        and other community organizations to
                        teachers who help,       various situations such as:                                  continue to work politically for teachers.
                        support and advise           a violation of a member’s rights under                       The Peel Local also wants to ensure
                        public elementary            the Human Rights Code;                                   that its members have an opportunity to
                        teachers. ETFO is            monitoring workplace accommodations                      meet, mingle and mix with other col-
                        not an entity                to ensure they are made;                                 leagues in a relaxed and fun atmosphere.
separated from its members. We, the                  assistance with performance appraisal                    Through the Social and Special Events
teachers, are the Federation. And we’re              difficulties;                                            Committee, various activities are organized
here to help each other.                             legal assistance should a member face                    so that the Peel elementary teachers have
    One of the main reasons we have this             allegations stemming from their                          this opportunity to network with col-
professional organization is for the purpose         professional duties;                                     leagues. Various activities have included
of collective bargaining. It is through                                                                       pub nights, movie nights, and sporting
                                                     support with allegations made to the
negotiations with the Board that we negoti-                                                                   events. Come out and join the fun!
                                                     College of Teachers.
ate the best terms and conditions of                                                                              How can you help us to help you?
employment for members. The                      As a professional organization, we provide                   ETFO is here to help you, but we need
entitlements that we negotiate are working       services in the area of professional devel-                  your assistance. How can you do this? First
conditions, salary and benefit funding. But      opment. Through negotiations, we secure                      of all, attend General Membership Meet-
we also provide protections. We ensure           professional development funding for                         ings in October and February and the
that the probationary timelines are fol-         ETFO members known as the Short Term                         Annual General Meeting in April. Sec-
lowed as well as the process for teacher         Professional Development Leave funds.                        ondly, read the various local newsletters,
performance appraisal. We also ensure that       The Local also has professional develop-                     the Local Link, Health Matters, Peel Pas-
the procedures for the declaration of            ment leave funding for which teachers may                    sages, and the Provincial Takeover Bulletin.
surplus and the transfer of teachers are         apply. Throughout the course of the year,                    Also, talk with your steward to raise
followed.                                        both the Peel Local and Provincial ETFO                      questions, concerns or to get information.
    Another important focus of the Federa-       offer workshops, conferences, and courses                    Check out your workplace ETFO bulletin
tion is the provision of benefits. Through       for which members may register. As well,                     board for information. If you have ques-
negotiations, we secure benefit funding for      leadership training is available. Aside from                 tions you can reach us at the Local at 905-
the elementary teachers in Peel. With the        provincial workshops, the Local also offers                  564-7233 and if you are calling from
negotiated benefit funding, we provide           a leadership series known as “The Leader-                    outside the local calling area, 1-877-772-
three areas of benefits, extended health,        ship Toolkit for Teachers”.                                  3836.
dental, life insurance and accidental death          ETFO is also active on the political
and dismemberment coverage. In addition,         front, both locally and provincially. We are
we assist with members’ LTD claims.              strong advocates of public education and
    One of the most important protections        we lobby the government on education
ETFO provides is legal assistance. Through       issues. Furthermore, we are very involved

                                                           What can you contribute?
        Writers                                            Staff Lines
                                                           Share with your colleagues the comings and goings at your school;

        Wanted!                                            celebrations, exciting events and special announcements.
                                                           Quality Teaching, Quality Program
                                                           A great chance to celebrate the excellence that goes on in your classroom or
                                                           the classroom of a colleague that you admire.
     The Peel Passages Editing Team
                                                           Book / Resource Review
       is looking for contributions                        Read a good book lately? Have you found a resource that you like? Write up
         to be considered for the                          a summary of a new resource or book you have found helpful or enjoyable
                                                           and perhaps add tips to integrate the ideas covered by the resource into the
        next edition of the paper.                         classroom.

          Submit your articles to Kurt Uriarte             Editorials / Letters to the Editor
                                                           What education issues matter to you? Share your feelings and insight.
                                                           All submissions will be considered for inclusion by the editing team.

4 | Peel Passages                                                                                                                         F A L L   2 0 0 4
                    L O C A L   E X E C U T I V E

F A L L   2 0 0 4                 Peel Passages | 5
C O L L E C T I V E            B A R G A I N I N G

Saying ‘No’ Professionally
by Sharron Raymond, Committee Chair

The following article was originally published in Peel Passages two years ago. Due to recent concerns about the
duties of a teacher, the issue of workload, stress and work/life balance, we feel it is very appropriate to re-
publish it at this time. In two years, teachers working conditions have not improved; in fact many elementary
teachers have reached their breaking point. Ed.
                          Look up ‘dedicated’     to receive healthy workplace certification.      networks. Activities, such as these, fall
                          in the dic tio nar y    This certification comes as a result of the      under voluntary work. However, when it
                          and you should find     Board setting wellness as a priority and         leads to stress, and burnout, even the
                          the word teacher.       their “stated commitment to staff wellness       Board would have to agree that the work-
                          Dedicated to            issues.” To celebrate this Board accom-          life balance is out of kilter and teachers
                          meeting the needs       plishment, they announced a Working Well         need to reassess how thinly they are
                          of their students; to   draw. To enter, staffs were encouraged to        spreading their dedication.
                          maintaining open        share how their school works together to              Saying ‘No’ is professional. It recog-
                          communications          create a positive work-life balance. It is       nizes the fact that there are limitations to
                          wi th pa re nt s; to    time that teachers follow the lead of the        what even a teacher can do well. The
participating in professional development;        Boar d and re-e valu ate thei r work -lif e      duties of a teacher are numerous and they
to supporting school initiatives; to being        balance to reduce the stress and burnout         requir e boundl ess energy to do well.
and doing wha tever is requ ired. This            presently plaguing them. To that end, it is      T a k i n g o n t o o m a n y i n i t i a-
dedic ation is, at the sa me tim e, the           important to note what the Education Act         tives/activities /committees either as an
strength and weakness of teachers, for as         does not require.                                individual or staff will only lead to an
d e ma n ds m ul t ip l y                                                                                                unhealthy, stress
exponentially, their                                                                                                     filled environment.
dedication to excel-                                                                                                     Jim Grieves, Director
lence is culminating
in stress, burnout and
                            Can teachers maintain their professionalism                                                  of Education for Peel,
                                                                                                                         noted that “healthy
ultimately in a work-       and say no? The answer is a resounding yes.                                                  employees are more
l i f e      i m b a l-                                                                                                  effective” and that
ance—something the                                                                                                       “good health among
Board has been                                                                                                           our staff is an integral
highlighting as a major focus. So, can                Nowhere in the Education Act, or our         part of our (Board) mission.” He continued
teachers maintain their professionalism           collective agreement, does it say that           to state that the Board was committed to
and say no? The answer is a resounding            teachers must be on five or six committees.      managing and sustaining a healthy work
yes.                                              If membership on one committee allows a          environment. From this, one can only
     The Education Act very clearly delin-        teacher to maintain the positive work-life       conclude, to say ‘No’ when requested to
eates the professional duties of a teacher.       balance the Board has stated it’s committed      t a ke o n m o r e i n i t i a t i v e s / a c t i v i-
First among these is to diligently and            to, then signing up for one committee is         ties/ committees is acting professionally, to
faithfully teach classes assigned by the          fine. Nowhere does it say that a teacher         safe guard the health of the workplace and
principal. To this end teachers are obliged       must provide numerous extra-curricular           to maintain the work-life balance the Board
to make their classrooms their top priority.      activities. As stated in the contract (Article   has professed to be central to student
Teachers must also carry out supervisory          19.03) teachers recognize the importance of      success and teacher effectiveness.
duties as assigned and be present in              such activities but at the same time the
teaching areas 15 minutes before classes          Board acknowledges these activities to be
begin in the morning and five minutes             voluntary work. Therefore providing even         Prior to the re-publication of this article, the Board was
before classes begin in the afternoon.            one or no such activity, if this allows for a    engaged in seeking a higher level of wellness certifica-
Classes are to be conducted in accordance         positive work-life balance is fine. The          tion. Unfortunately for Peel Elementary teachers, the
                                                                                                   reality of wellness is still elusive. Our working condi-
with a timetable. Teaching plans are to be        Education Act, as well as our contract
                                                                                                   tions have not improved; stress continues to take its
prepared. Reasonable safety procedures are        (Article 19.02) provide for a 40-minute
                                                                                                   toll; and teachers continue to report that Board
to be in place and proper order and disci-        uninterrupted lunch. The Board’s Wellness        initiatives rather than being streamlined, have
pline maintained. The Board is to be              program suggests that this time is needed        multiplied exponentially. If a positive work/life balance
notified in case of absence. Finally teachers     by teachers to take a walk, relax and            is to be achieved, it will only come with teachers
are to assist principals in developing            refocus for the afternoon in order to            standing together in solidarity for what is just and fair.
cooperation and coordination of effort            maintain a positive work-life balance. Thus
among members of staff. These duties              teachers are being professional when they
constitute a job description for teachers,        say no to extra activities during this time
not teachers’ whole lives.                        frame. Nowhere in the Education Act or
     The Board, in a recent news release          our contract does it require teachers to
dated October 21,2002, announced it was           maintain computer systems, or manage

6 | Peel Passages                                                                                                                       F A L L    2 0 0 4
                                                                                                   S T AT U S         O F     W O M E N

Status Events
by Janice Balesic, Committee Chair
                         The goal of the           we juggle the many roles expected of us       manner and is always sensitive and
                         Status of Women           both personally and professionally, we        responsive to the needs of her students.
                         Committee is to           need to reflect on our successes and          This is evident by the enthusiasm shown
                         raise consciousness       recognise the many great things teachers      by her students who love to be with her.
                         surrounding issues        are accomplishing. At the dinner, we              The Marilyn Lennox Memorial Award
                         that concern and          reco gniz ed two of our coll eagu es by       was established in 1992 to honour the
                         affect women. We          presenting the Sue Hare Key Teacher           memory of Marilyn Lennox, who was a
                         endeavour to              Award and the Marilyn Lennox Memorial         Peel classroom and resource teacher. This
                         provide programs          Award.                                        award is given to a female member of PETL
                         and services to meet          The Sue Hare Key Teacher Award was        who best reflects the qualities that Marilyn
the specific needs of ETFO’s female mem-           established in 1996 to honour Sue Hare, a     demonstrated during her teaching career.
bers. Key events this year include our             Peel teacher. As a member of the Peel         This year’s recipient was Joan Harper from
annual dinner, the Breaking the Silence            Women Teachers’ Association, she had          Helen Wilson PS The award was presented
Workshop, Women in Action, the Girls’              many roles including, Key teacher, a          by Janice Balesic.
Grade 8 Conference and our speakers                member of the executive, Legislation              Joan has enjoyed a long and varied
series. Further to this, we provide funding        Con ven er, Sec ond Vice -Pre sid ent and     career in teaching. Her dedication to her
to sponsor members who attend confer-              Spring Assembly and Annual Meeting            profession is evident in so many ways. She
ences and workshops related to women’s             Delegate. Sue Hare was the sister of Cathy    is always willing to support and assist her
leadership, equity and women’s issues. We          Smith, our Local President. Sue passed        colleagues, giving freely of her experience
have established a $10,000 PD fund which           away in May 1996 after 25 years of service.   and knowledge. Joan is a greatly respected
can be accessed in addition to STPDL and               This year the Sue Hare award was          member of Helen Wilson Public School.
our own PETL PD fund. Members can                  presented by Cathy Smith to Christine         Congratulations to both of this year’s
apply for funding up to a limit of $600            Welton, a teacher at Ellengale Public         award recipients!
including up to two supply days.                   School. As a classroom teacher, Christine         Our keynote speaker for the dinner was
    The Status of Women Dinner was held            works relentlessly to provide innovative      journalist and best-selling author, Shari
on Thursday, November 4, at the Pavilion           and exciting programs for her students.       Gr ay do n. Gr ay do n, a ve te ra n me di a
Royale. This was a night to celebrate. As          She demonstrates a kind, gentle and caring    literacy C O N T I N U E D O N N E X T P A G E

Author and activist, Shari Graydon spoke on media literacy               Organizing Committee

                                                                                                 Christine Welton presented with Sue Hare Award

F A L L   2 0 0 4                                                                                                        Peel Passages | 7
S T AT U S         O F     W O M E N

activist, and the author of In Your                  Honey Thomas from Erin Mills Sr. PS                 also like to thank ETFO provincial for
Face—The Culture of Beauty and You.                  Romina Loeffler from Balmoral PS                    making this program possible here in Peel.
Shari’s slide show presentation and talk on          Karen Cox from Tomken Road Middle
the effects of advertising in our society was
                                                                                                         Upcoming Status of Women Events
very informative and entertaining.                                                                           Women in Action conference to be held
                                                     Mona Walrond from Balmoral Sr. PS
    On the evening of October 28 and all                                                                     March 4–6. This is a Women’s leadership
                                                     Alison Robinson from Dunrankin Dr. PS
day Friday, October 29, the Status of                                                                        conference. Please look for upcoming
Women Committee along with ETFO                  Mona Walrond and Alison Robinson were                       notices regarding this exciting
Provincial co-sponsored a Breaking the           once again the workshop organizers.                         conference in your stewards’ bulletins
Silence workshop that examined violence              A report to the Annual Meeting, August                  and on our website. We will be running a
against women. Topics included in the            2003 stated that “One-quarter of all violent                part one and part two this year. To further
workshop were:                                   crimes reported to a sample of police                       advertise this event, we will be having a
                                                 services in 2001 involved cases of family                   wine and cheese at the Educator’s centre
    what constitutes violence: facts vs.
                                                 violence. According to the sixth annual                     on Thursday, January 20th.
                                                                                                                             Our Speakers Series will
    proactive and survival
                                                                                                                             b e g i n o n Tu e s d a y ,
                                                                                                                             February 1. The topic will
    impact of violence on
    children.                     …we need to reflect on our successes                                                       be “Where is the
                                                                                                                             L o v e — T h e
Our keynote speaker for the       and recognize the many great things                                                        Commodification of
Thursday evening session                                                                                                     Gender in Hip-Hop.”
was Marsha Sfeir who is               teachers are accomplishing.                                                            The Grade 8 Girls’
the Executive Director for                                                                                                   Conference is on Friday
the Education Wife Assault                                                                                                   June 10 after school and
Centre. Her topic was on “Woman                  edition of Family Violence in Canada: A                     all day Saturday June 11 at Erindale
Assault”—how to define and recognize it          Statistical Profile, two-thirds of these cases              College, Mississauga Campus.
and how woman assault impacts upon               were violence committed by a spouse or an                   Registration packages will be sent to the
society, our own lives and the children we       ex-spouse and 85% of the victims were                       schools.
teach.                                           women.”
                                                                                                         If you would like to contact me, please
    On Friday, a panel presentation by               Programs like Breaking the Silence are
                                                                                                         either call Greenbriar Sr. PS (905) 791-2332
several community agencies and a question        greatly needed to help educate us about
                                                                                                         or email me at
and answer period was provided. Our              violence against women. I would like to
facilitators for the program this year were:     thank the organizers and facilitators who
    Deborah Solomon from Royal Orchard           helped to make this program possible and
    Sr. PS                                       the participants who took part. I would

          It’s not just where you hang your hat
              Your home means so much more. That’s why I’ll make sure you have all the information
              you need to feel comfortable with this important decision. There is no obligation and there
              is no pressure – but there is help. Like a clear, no-nonsense explanation of everything
              involved. And access to the latest on-line listings that match your profile exactly.

                    So call today and find out how I can help you with your homework!


                                            Edward Reid, M.ed., Ms. in educ.
                                      Upon closing, a donation will be made on your behalf to The Children’s Wish Foundation or Big Brothers/Big Sisters.

8 | Peel Passages                                                                                                                         F A L L   2 0 0 4
                                                                                                 P O L I T I C A L         A C T I O N

Everyday Is Labour Day!
by Matthew Curran, Committee Chair
                        It can be argued        offensive against the strikers and had 24      in Winnipeg was 5 kilometres in length
                        that the celebration    strikers arrested. Since 1792 it had been      and Labour Day parades became a lasting
                        of a labour parade      illegal for workers to join labour organiza-   tradition in other Canadian cities. Until
                        in recognition of       tions. In the eyes of business and the         recent times, it was not uncommon to have
                        labour’s great          government, unions were conspiratorial.        the sidewalks along the Toronto parade
                        contribution is a       The first labour parade recorded in the        route five people deep. Working families
                        Canadian inven-         United States was not until 1882 and           made it a tradition to gather en masse at
                        tion. The first         Europe’s first ‘May Day’ labour parade was     the CNE ending the yearly parade.
                        Labour Day parade       not until 1889.                                    The legacy of the Toronto Printer’s
                        in Canada took              The Trade Union Act of 1872 enacted        Union remains. In this day and age of
place on April 14, 1872 in Toronto where        by the Tories, allowed workers to join         homework for workers such as e-mailing
members and sympathizers of the striking        unio ns and prot ecte d thei r acti viti es.   the boss completed presentations or in the
Toronto Printer’s Union marched to              Brought about by Tory Prime Minister Sir       case of teachers, completing IEPs, unit
Queen’s Park requesting that their              John A. MacDonald (who was no friend to        plans and report cards, the Printer’s origi-
employer (George Brown, a notable Liberal       George Brown), it was a ploy to win sup-       nal demand of a nine-hour workday has
politician and owner of The Globe newspa-       port of workers and embarrass his rival        been broken. We, as teachers, must be
per) reduce the workweek to 58 hours.           Liberals. The annual labour parades in         aware of this change as technological
Over 2,000 workers marched throughout           support of the “Nine-Hour Movement”            advances such as the Internet threaten the
the city led by two marching bands and by       were becoming a tradition. These inspired      balance established between work and life
the time the marchers reached Queen’s           a carpenter and future president of the        outside of work. The Peel Teachers’ Local
Park, the parade’s ranks swelled to over        American Federation of Labour, Peter J.        was present in this year’s Labour Day
10,000 as the strikers were joined by           McGuire, to organize the first American        parade marching with other teachers and
sympathetic Toronto citizens. The march         labour parade in New York on September         la bo ur af fi li at es un de r th e “U ni on
by the Toronto Printer’s Union was the first    5, 1882. Succumbing to political pressure      Yes—Teachers Yes” banner, recognizing
organized labour march and it also served       to recognize labour’s contributions and the    labour’s great contributions and ensuring
as a beacon to industrialized workers           need for a holiday in September, the           that the voice of labour continues to be
organizing “Nine-Hour Movements” in             government of Sir John Thompson passed         heard just as it was in the Toronto Printer’s
favour of reducing the standard 12-hour         a law making Labour Day a national             strike of 1872.
day. However, Brown went on the legal           holiday. That year, the Labour Day parade

“Union Yes, Teachers Yes” PETL members marched in the 2004 Labour Day Parade

F A L L   2 0 0 4                                                                                                     Peel Passages | 9
P R O F E S S I O N A L                  D E V E L O P M E N T

Professional Development in Peel
by Kathy Josevski, Committee Chair
                        The Elementary                 workshops and conferences. This is known              Presenters on the Road program. Also, do
                        Teachers’ Federa-              as “Short Term Professional Development               not forget to browse the ETFO website
                        tion of Ontario                Leave (STPDL)” funding. Furthermore, the              ( to familiarize yourself with
                        (ETFO), along with             Local itself provides funding. Each member            the credit courses that are being offered
                        the Peel Elementary            interested in applying for conference                 through ETFO. All the courses being
                        Te a c h e r s ’ L o c a l     funding should ask their workplace stew-              offered by ETFO are in collaboration with
                        (PETL), acknowl-               ard about the application and the specific            Drake University. These are highly effec-
                        edge, support and              requirements involved with the application            tive courses that will assist many individu-
                        advocate personal              process.                                              als along their path of professional devel-
                        professional devel-                To help members attain their profes-              opment. New to ETFO are the four-hour
opment. Last year’s professional develop-              sional growth goals, and to help them                 on-line workshops. Information for these is
ment opportunities focused on classroom                further their leadership skills in the class-         available on the website. Check them out!
management, assessment, curriculum                     room, school, and the Federation the PD                   Currently, the Leadership subcommit-
planning, goal setting and leadership                  Committee is divided into two subcommit-              tee is busy finalizing the details for their
growth. In fact, ETFO promotes a high                  tees: Programs and Leadership. The Pro-               second annual leadership series. The
standard of professional ethics and compe-             grams subcommittee has a full year ahead.             Leadership Toolkit for Teachers is tenta-
tence for the teaching profession. However,            They are working enthusiastically to                  tively scheduled to start in March. It will
ETFO does not support the Professional                 provide a variety of workshops for mem-               examine Leadership and Team Building,
Learning Program and recertification                   bers at the primary, junior and intermedi-            Motivation and Communication, Decision
introduced by the last                                                                                                           Making and Problem
government. We believe                                                                                                           Solving and Conflict
each member is
accountable for their
                                   We believe each member is accountable                                                         Resolution. As well, all
                                                                                                                                 participants will receive
professional develop-
ment and does not
                                   for their professional development and                                                        a working resource
                                                                                                                                 binder for personal
require the Ontario                does not require the Ontario College of                                                       professional reference.
College of Teachers to                                                                                                            On behalf of the PD
monitor and record the                    Teachers to monitor them.                                                              Committee, thank you
professional develop-                                                                                                            for your continuous
ment ETFO members                                                                                                                support. We hope to see
have taken. ETFO continuously strives to               ate levels. In September the subcommittee             you at our upcoming workshops! Let’s keep
work in collaboration with its members to              held its first Retirement Workshop. The               working together to advance the cause of
provide professional development that is of            workshop was attended by over seventy                 education and the status of teachers.
high quality and of relevance to their                 members and received rave reviews. The                    If you have any ideas for future
professional needs.                                    subcommittee is planning the following                PD/Leadership programs or are interested
    In accordance to ETFO’s objectives, the            workshops: Interview Skills, Building Your            in joining the committee, please contact
Professional Development Committee in                  Teacher Planner, Programming for Physical             Kathy Josevski at We
the Peel Local, is dedicated to providing              and Health Education and Programming for              wish you all the best with all your future
opportunities for professional development             Special Education Students in the area of             professional development endeavors. Have
and leadership. Through negotiations, the              French. The subcommittee will also be                 a great academic year!
Local secures funding from the Board that              utilizing the various provincial ETFO
PETL members may apply for to attend PD                workshops that are offered through the

                          Passing the Test:
                          The False Promises of Standardized Testing
                          EDITED BY MARITA MOLL
                          552 African-American high school students with low skills were expelled from
                          school in Birmingham, Alabama, just before a big state test. Test scores went
                          up and the superintendent got a bonus.
                          “Maybe in the twenty-first century, satire about the schools is no longer even
                          possible,” says U.S. testing critic Susan Ohanian.
                          In recent years, and without much public scrutiny, large-scale testing projects
                          have become firmly established in Canada and around the world. These tests
                          are now self-perpetuating industries. They divert large sums of public monies
                          from resource-starved schools. Teachers and students are pressured to increase
       February 2004
    ISBN 0-88627-334-X    the school’s test scores. Low ranking schools are publicly stigmatized. Does any
        $24.95            of this improve learning?
                          In this collection, researchers, teachers, parents and students speak out about
                          the problems of standardized testing and the growing opposition to it.

10 | Peel Passages                                                                                                                       F A L L   2 0 0 4
                    P R O F E S S I O N A L   D E V E L O P M E N T

F A L L   2 0 0 4                                   Peel Passages | 11
L O C A L       E X E C U T I V E

Politically Speaking                            C O N T I N U E D   F R O M   P A G E   1

selected government MPPs to breakfast                   school and board reports (e.g. student      to work after age 65, to being forced to.”
meetings at the November and June execu-                mobility,ESL/D levels).                     Rationale:
tive meetings of ETFO.                                  Reports will include overall results only      As those with little or no pension
                                                        and not results in each subcategory.           benefits work longer, employers will
Survive and Thrive                                                                                     amass arguments to reduce the pension
Again this year, ETFO is offering its on-line      Assessment Design                                   benefits of those wishing to retire early.
conference for beginning teachers, “Sur-                Testing will be cut from 12.5 hours to 6       Since the United States ended
vive and Thrive.” Interested members who                hours.                                         mandatory retirement, the age at which
access the ETFO website will find a                                                                    Americans can collect Social Security
                                                        Thematic contexts will be removed;
resource section and a “Let’s Share” section                                                           (our CPP) has risen from 65 to 67.
                                                        reading and writing questions will be
for discussing issues and answers. Topics               based upon mini-topics.                        Even with working past age 65, poverty
to date have included classroom manage-                                                                among seniors in the US remains very
                                                        The number of booklets will be reduced
ment, occasional teaching, appropriate                                                                 high.
                                                        to three: reading, writing and math.
professional relationships and reflective                                                              An older work force will strain the
                                                        Multiple-choice and performance
practice. All previous topics have been                                                                benefits plans of active members and
                                                        questions will be intermingled in one
archived and are accessible.                                                                           create pressure from employers to
                                                                                                       reduce benefits.
                                                        80% of test items will be made public
EQAO: Changes Coming                                                                                   Relations between unions and
                                                        after testing, with detailed analysis of
As a result of a lengthy review of its                                                                 employers will face the additional strain
                                                        common errors, etc.
practices, EQAO is changing its assessment                                                             of unions advocating for increased
                                                        EQAO will draw links for teachers,
programs. The review included a research                                                               numbers of members needing workplace
                                                        between test items and curriculum .
phase, stakeholder consultations and an                                                                accommodations due to disabilities.
external review by OISE/UT involving                                                                   The wages of younger workers will face
                                                   Cyclic Review                                       downward pressure as they compete for
national and international experts in large-
                                                        A panel of psychometric experts will           jobs with lower paid seniors flooding the
scale testing, numeracy and literacy. All
                                                        examine psychometric issues.                   workforce.
students will continue to be tested because
                                                        A systematic peer review process will be       Teachers are retiring earlier; in 2002,
reliable school and school board results
                                                        established with the next cycle being          only 11.6% of teachers retired at age 60
could not be obtained using only random
                                                        completed by 2009.                             or older, down from 27.6% in 1992; the
samples of students. As the changes below
are implemented, ETFO will monitor their           Members are reminded of the ETFO                    average retirement age of teachers now is
impact.                                            advisory not to participate in any EQAO             56; will this continue if mandatory
                                                   activities, including marking.                      retirement is lifted?
Assessment Practices                                                                                   Even if laws are written to protect those
   Tests will occur later in the year (late                                                            currently in the workforce, it is unlikely
                                                   ETFO Credit Courses
   May and early June).                                                                                that new workers will be protected.
                                                   For 2004–2005, ETFO is offering 104 credit
   Ads will be posted to involve more              courses across Ontario. More than 3,000
   teachers in the active committees of            members have taken ETFO’s credit courses         Peel Returns to Provincial
   EQAO.                                           in each of the last three years. 1,027           Prominence
   Comparison of year-to-year results now          members completed ETFO courses during            At ETFO’s Annual Meeting in August, I
   will include all test items and not just        this year’s summer session. Information          was elected to the provincial executive.
   multiple-choice items.                          about the courses is available on the            This marks the first time since 1998 that
   The administrative burden to teachers           Provincial website:              Peel has been represented at this level. As
   will be reduced.                                                                                 the second largest Local in the union, it is
                                                   Mandatory Retirement                             only right that Peel have a voice at the
Reporting                                          The Ontario government is ending manda-          Provincial Executive level. Thank you to
   Reports will be available within 12             tory retirement at age 65 and invited ETFO,      the Peel delegation for their solid support
   weeks in an easier-to-interpret format.         among others, to provide input about how         during the voting and thank you to those
   Student results will acknowledge                to accomplish this smoothly. ETFO, like          who worked so hard on my campaign.
   varying degrees of mastery within each          the labour movement in general, opposes
   level (e.g. late level 2, early level 3).       ending mandatory retirement primarily
   Contextual data will be included in             because “it is a short hop from being able

12 | Peel Passages                                                                                                              F A L L   2 0 0 4
                    L O C A L   E X E C U T I V E

F A L L   2 0 0 4                Peel Passages | 13
A N N U A L          M E E T I N G / C O N S T I T U T I O N

Highlights of the 2004
Provincial Annual Meeting
by Sabina Freemantle, Committee Chair
                          This year’s Annual      resolutions were passed shaping the work           President, Sam Hammond as Vice Presi-
                          Meeting was held at     of ETFO f or the co ming yea r. These              dent, and Cynthia Lemon as Vice President
                          the Westin Harbour      included all members of the provincial             (female). Our Peel President, Cathy Smith,
                          Castle Hotel in         executive being elected for two year terms         was elected as an Executiv e Member
                          To r o n t o f r o m    beginning at the 2005 Annual Meeting, a            (female).
                          August 16 to 19.        new committee to work on French as a                   Peel’s delegation was committed to the
                          Over 500 delegates      Second Language was added and a number             business of the day’s meetings and at night
                          plus alternates and     of resolutions supporting the involvement          we enjoyed our time getting to know each
                          observers attended      of new teachers in ETFO were passed.               other. One evening we toured the Toronto
                          the sixth ETFO              Stephen Lewis, UN Secretary General’s          harbour on a dinner boat cruise and
Annual Meeting. Peel was represented by           Special Envoy on HIV/AIDS in Africa,               another evening we attended the Presi-
39 delegates and 5 alternates.                    spoke to the delegation about the issue of         dent’s dinner and dance. We also spent
    Our provincial president, Emily Noble,        HIV/AIDS that is affecting many parts of           time listening to some of our talented
opened the Federation’s Annual Meeting by         the world. In an emotional and heartfelt           musicians, singing karaoke and becoming
stating, “We have come together at this           speech, he told us that it was not a lack of       acqua inted with deleg ates from other
annual meeting because we are determined          knowledge that prevents action in Africa,          locals.
to improve the working conditions of our          but rather a lack of resources. In response            Thank you to all the Peel delegates,
members and to bring a stronger sense of          to Mr. Lewis’ comments, the delegates              alternates, and observers for their atten-
social justice to Ontario…Yes we have             contributed $6,800 to the Stephen Lewis            dance, participation, and commitment to
made great gains. But the journey is not          Foundation and a resolution was passed             the Peel Elementary Teachers’ Local.
complete.”                                        that the Annual Meeting recognize the                  Next year’s Annual Meeting takes place
    The delegates passed ETFO’s priorities        ETFO Humanity Fund as a bargaining                 at the Sheraton Centre from Monday,
for the coming year:                              objective.                                         August 15 to Thursday, August 18, 2005.
    to protect the collective bargaining rights       Gerard Kennedy, our Minister of                We approved a list of 40 delegates at our
    of all members;                               Ed uc at io n, ad dr es se d th e de le ga ti on   October 25 General Membership Meeting.
    to defend publicly funded public              outlining the new three “Rs”—respect,              We are looking for members to attend as
    education;                                    responsibility and results. He said that           alternates at the meeting. Should you be
    to serve the needs of the membership;         respect for teachers has been absent for too       interested in attending next year’s Annual
    to provide for the professional               long and the Liberal government is intent          Meeting, please contact me at
    development of members;                       on changing that beginning with the repeal I look forward to
    to promote social justice in the areas of     of the PLP program. In closing, Kennedy            hearing from anyone who is looking for
    anti-poverty, non-violence, and equity;       said that we cannot ignore our obligation to       further information or is interested in
    to support international assistance and       the future generation and that together we         attending.
    cooperation.                                  can do a better job.
                                                      The 2005 Annual Meeting delegates re-
Many resolutions were presented, debated,         elected Emily Noble as ETFO’s president
passed, or defeated. Some important               and elected David Clegg as First Vice

14 | Peel Passages                                                                                                              F A L L   2 0 0 4
                                       A N N U A L       M E E T I N G / C O N S T I T U T I O N

Good times at the President’s Dinner

                                           Delegates on the floor

                                           PETL Released Officers

Caucus chat on resolutions

F A L L   2 0 0 4                                                               Peel Passages | 15
M E M B E R          A T     L A R G E

Suddenly, I Realized
It’s All Teachers!
by Jay Fedosoff, PETL Executive Member at Large
                        I am currently in        that there was a whole other layer of            Harbour Castle in Toronto for 4 days. It was
                        my fifth year of         responsibility within Peel that needed my        intense. Delegates from all over the prov-
                        teaching in Peel.        attention. I was determined to get involved      ince were there. Voices were raised, people
                        When I started,          to gain more of a ‘big picture’ perspective.     often spoke out of turn, lots (and lots!) of
                        ETFO was a meet-             Last year, I got a ‘tap on the shoulder’     paper was handed out and everyone was
                        ing I would sit in on    about the ETFO Annual General Meeting. I         interested and concerned about what was
                        periodically after       was told that it was a great way to actually     happening. ETFO’s constitution, its by-
                        staff meetings.          see how our Provincial Federation worked.        laws and policies were changed. New
                        Voices were usually      I had learned a lot about our Local over the     policy statements were thought up, voted
                        raised, many people      past year and a half, so I jumped at the         on and formally created. People ran for
usually spoke out of turn, lots of paper was     chance to gain a provincial ‘big picture’        office and spoke about how they would
handed out and there were always lots of         perspective about an organization I was a        help ETFO move forward. The essence of
concerned and interested faces. I was often      member of. I ran at our Local’s GMM in           our Federatio n—the way in which it
far too involved in my own little space (i.e.,   October of last year to become a delegate at     worked, the content of all that paper I had
my classroom, my students, paying rent,          the ETFO AGM.                                    been receiving for the past 4 years—was
etc.) to pay much attention. However, as a           After the elec tion , I got invo lved        being created and it was being done by
curious person who likes to know how             quickly. I learned that the ETFO AGM was         teachers like me. All of a sudden, I realized
things work, something about those meet-         the starting point for all of the upcoming       that this was not what I thought it had
ings kept me interested.                         year’s activities, workshops, negotiations,      been in my first few years of teaching. I
    In my second year, I paid more atten-        mandates and political action across the         realized that I had a lot in common with all
tion to those periodic meetings, read some       province. All of a sudden, I was working         of these people. We were all teachers.
of the papers and                                                                                                        Te a c h e r s w e r e
realized that they                                                                                                       making these
had a lot to do with                                                                                                     changes. I realized
me. They had a lot to        The essence of our Federation—the way in                                                    that teachers were
do with my career                                                                                                        raising their voices.
and those of my              which it worked—was being created and it                                                    Te a c h e r s w e r e
colleagues. At the
time, our contract
                                was being done by teachers like me.                                                      handing out paper
                                                                                                                         and deciding on its
was coming up for                                                                                                        content. Teachers
renewal and many                                                                                                         were speaking out of
aspects of my life could have been affected.     on a volunteer committee that reviewed the       turn when they were passionate about how
Most notably, the money aspect—rent! I           Provincial constitution, bylaws and policy       their Federation should be managed and
decided to get a little more involved in         statements. We discussed them, wrote up          run. Teachers were interested and con-
learning what this was all about.                amendments, and thought of changes we            cerned about ETFO.
    In my third year, I took on the role of      might like to see made to them from a Peel           Sixty-five thousand teachers make up
Steward at my school. I figured it would be      point of view.                                   and run the Elementary Teachers’ Federa-
a great way to learn about how things                Wait a minute. In a span of almost 4         tion of Ontario. I watched it happen at last
worked within the system at the ETFO             years, I had gone from not knowing I             year’s AGM and I am looking forward to
level. All of a sudden, I was not only at        should be interested at all, to realizing this   the second year of my term at the August
Peel Elementary Teachers’ Local meetings         all had something to do with me, to pro-         2005 Provincial AGM where I can once
where I had to pay attention, but I was also     posing changes to our Provincial body’s          again help other teachers set the course for
running meetings at my school. Interest-         constitution! I was just a teacher! How          our Federation for years to come. Have you
ingly, nothing had changed from my first         could I possibly know anything about this?       thought of getting involved?
year—voices were still raised, people often      How could I possibly be this heavily
spoke out of turn, more paper got handed         involved with an organization representing
out and pretty much everyone’s face had          65,000 people?                                   Jay Fedosoff teaches Grade 2 at Massey Street Jr. PS.
an interested yet concerned look. I learned          Then, in August of this year, I attended     He can be reached at (905) 791-9392.
a lot that year. Most importantly, I learned     the Provincial Annual Meeting at the

    R.E.S.P.E.C.T.   Find out what it means to us!

16 | Peel Passages                                                                                                                  F A L L   2 0 0 4
                                                                                           A N T I - R A C I S M / E Q U I T Y

Off to a Great Start
by Usha Sethi, Committee Chair
                         Welcome to a new       not being adequately addressed by the rest        at the Board;
                         year and a new Anti    of the world. Some common sights he has           promote teaching as a career for under-
                         Racism/Equity          seen have left lasting impressions on his         represented groups in society;
                         Committee (AREC).      mind, such as seeing an eight-year-old boy        encourage the development of bias-free
                         We are excited as      suddenly become the head of a household,          curriculum materials;
                         we look at the year    in charge of looking after a sibling or two       provide strategies to ensure that all Peel
                         ahead of us with       because their families have died of AIDS.         Local activities are inclusive.
                         fresh ideas and        His speech was powerful and moving and
                         enthusiasm.            there weren’t too many dry eyes by the         The AREC’s immediate mandate is the
                           The year started     time he was done. At the conclusion of his     creation of a database of community role
off with ETFO’s Annual General Meeting in       speech there was a spontaneous collection      models. It will include a diverse a group of
August. Several motions were tabled, some       of money which exceeded everyone’s             people in order to create resources about
passed and some didn’t. Some of the most        expectations. He asked us to give gener-       under-represented groups such as visible
controversial ones were inevitably those        ously to fundraising for this cause. He was    minorities, Aboriginal, bisexual, gay,
that related to equity issues. There was        the most stirring speaker I have ever heard    lesbian, transgender, people with disabili-
much discussion concerning the lack of          and certainly inspirational for the AREC.      ties, people of different religions and senior
minority representation within the Provin-          The work of the AREC is two-fold:          citizens.
cial Executive. In response to this debate, a   1) the committee engages members in                If you are interested in learning more
well spoken, dynamic delegate from              anti-racist education;                         about our initiative or would like to
Toronto, who was a visible minority, ran        2) the committee addresses gender equity       become involved, please give us a call as
from the floor and was successful in his        and disability issues, as well as issues       we are always looking for new members.
bid for a seat on the Provincial Executive.     which impact on Aboriginal, bisexual, gay,     The AREC is your voice.
    The guest speaker at the meeting, Mr.       lesbian and transgender members.
Stephen Lewis, is a special envoy of the
United Nations, and has been working in         We aspire to:
Africa, to help victims of AIDS and war.           forge collaborative links with the Race
His speech highlighted concerns that the           Relations and Equity office at the Board;
spread of AIDS is a global pandemic and is         support members with related initiatives

F A L L   2 0 0 4                                                                                                    Peel Passages | 17
A W A R D S            &        R E C O G N I T I O N

End of Year Awards Dinner
  Each year, in the midst of the school year countdown, the Awards Committee hosts its annual
  end of year celebration at the Pavilion Royale. Service pin recipients, award winners, staffs and
  various ETFO committees come together to toast our collective success stories. Good food, good
  fun and good company make this Dinner and Dance a much-anticipated event. We look forward
  to an even bigger and better event this June. Plan on joining us Thursday, June 23, 2005!

Dancin’ the night away

Twenty years service in total

Awards Committee Chair, Linda Woodhead & Sabina doing a great job   Get up and Boogie!

18 | Peel Passages                                                                         F A L L   2 0 0 4
                                           A W A R D S   &   R E C O G N I T I O N

Dance, dance, dance!

Enjoying a pre-dinner drink   What’s for dinner?

F A L L   2 0 0 4                                                 Peel Passages | 19
O C C U P AT I O N A L               H E A LT H         &     S A F E T Y

We Don’t Have To Take It!
by Doug Hitchcock, Occupational Health & Safety Teacher Advisor
                       If you feel that         violence is not acceptable. The Ministry of      Can I Refuse Unsafe Work?
                       being the recipient      Labour has the authority to write orders to      Teachers have a limited right to refuse
                       of some form of          create a safe workplace. Recent orders have      work when they have reason to believe that
                       violence is part of      included:                                        the conditions in the workplace are likely
                       your job, you are            establishing training standards for          to endanger themselves or other workers.
                       wrong!                       workers;                                     The limitation is that the wellbeing of the
                        “A violent incident         developing a response plan for students      students in your care must take prece-
                        encompasses any             with severe/repeated violent incidents;      dence.
                        aggressive act that         students with severe/repeated violent            A work refusal must be investigated
                        causes physical or          incidents should be assessed for             promptly following the procedures out-
emotional harm to a member and includes             appropriate learning environment;            lined in The Occupational Health and
violence or any threatening statement that          notwithstanding a handicapped [not our       Safety Act section 43. The Local and the
gives the member reasonable cause to                words!] student’s right to an education, a   Occupational Health and Safety Teacher
believe there is a risk of physical or emo-         worker’s right to a healthy and safe work    Advisor should be notified immediately of
tional harm. Intent is not a factor in deter-       environment must be ensured;                 any refusal. The refusal process should be
mining risk to members.” ETFO Violent               a list of qualified workers to fill short    a remedy of last resort to be used after
Incident Report                                     term absences such as illness should be      other avenues have been exhausted. Keep
                                                    established;                                 in mind that The Occupational Health and
    Violence must not be allowed to be part                                                      Safety Act prevents employers from taking
                                                    employer shall acquaint worker with any
of your life as a teacher. Under no circum-                                                      reprisals against workers who are acting in
                                                    hazard including risk of injury from
stances should it be considered a part of                                                        accordance with the Act.
                                                    violent aggressive incidents from special
your job description. The source of the                                                              If you have Health and Safety concerns
                                                    education students with a history of
violence is not part of the equation. Your                                                       do not hesitate to contact the Local office
                                                    violent incidents;
employer has a duty under the Occupa-                                                            or me directly. The union is here to help
                                                    undertake professional assessment to
tional Health and Safety Act to take every                                                       and protect you.
                                                    determine if student’s continued
precaution reasonable to protect you.
                                                    presence creates an unacceptable risk;
Nowhere does The Occupational Health                                                             Doug Hitchcock
and Safety Act talk about costs, the fund-          develop and implement policies and
                                                                                                 ETFO Occupational Health & Safety
ing formula, staffing levels or other items.        procedures (staffing, training and
                                                                                                 Teacher Advisor
The Occupational Health and Safety Act is           emergency incident response).
                                                                                                 Office: (905) 890-1010 ext. 2686
there to protect the workers of Ontario not                                                      Pager: (416) 370-5927
to make financial or managerial decisions.      Please keep in mind that each Ministry of
                                                                                                 Fax: (905) 890-8893
    Recent decisions from the Ontario           Labour Inspector has the power to make
                                                individual determinations within the   
Ministry of Labour in a number of School
Boards support ETFO’s position that             Ministry’s policies.

                 We’re making a list and checking it twice.
                Going to find out who’s supportive and nice.

                        The Peel Elementary Teachers’ Local wishes to acknowledge the support
                      given to teachers at the following locations during the last reporting period.







20 | Peel Passages                                                                                                          F A L L   2 0 0 4
                                                                                           E D U C A T I O N A L             I S S U E S

Waste-Free Lunches: A Lesson in
Environmental Stewardship
by Amy Hemmert
A typical lunch brought to school by a          food is put in reusable containers rather       may include:
North American child today contains far         than wrapped in disposable packaging. A           Performing an initial trash audit (see
more packaging than ever before. With           drink is packed in a refillable bottle. Cloth     sidebar) to determine the type, amount,
families relying on the convenience of          napkins and stainless-steel utensils replace      and sources of school waste, and
prepackaged lunch items and single-use          disposables. All containers are resealable,       additional audits at regular intervals to
wrappings such as baggies, aluminum foil,       so that leftover food and drink can be            assess the effect of any changes that have
and plastic wrap, it is no surprise that        saved for later.                                  been implemented.
lunchtime trash is second only to office            Hot lunch programs that are waste free        Sending letters or newsletters to
paper as the leading source of school           provide reusable tableware—plates, cups,          students’ families to enlist their support
waste. The New York State Department of         utensils and napkins—which may be                 and to keep them up to date. They’ll need
Environmental Conservation estimates that       washed in the school kitchen, sent home           to know what a waste-free lunch is, why
the average child taking a disposable lunch     with students for washing, or washed by a         a waste-free lunch program is important,
to school generates 30 kilograms of garbage     third party such as a caterer or restaurant       and what they can do to pack waste-free
per school year. Annually, that adds up to      that provides meals to the school. Food           lunches quickly and conveniently. After
more than half a billion kilograms of lunch     waste is minimized through education and          the program is launched, providing
waste for the 64,000 public U.S. elemen-        training and by implementing low-waste            families with the results of your ongoing
tary schools alone. And where does all this     serving procedures. Some schools, for             trash audits is a great way to let them
lunch trash go? It is hauled off to incinera-   instance, allow students to take only what        know how they’re doing.
tors and landfills, of course, where it is      they know they will eat. Some offer self-         Sending memos to teachers about your
burned or buried. As landfills across North     serve salad bars.                                 goals, activities, and plans, so that they
America reach capacity, communities must            Waste-free school lunch programs vary         can support the program.
look for new landfill sites, and the new        tremendously. Some focus on hot lunches           Holding contests to motivate students.
sites are usually
farther away from                                                                                                     Making presentations
where the waste is                                                                                                    or holding workshops
generated. This                                                                                                       to educate students
greater distance                                                                                                      about environmental
results in longer                                                                                                     problems and
transit times, higher                                                                                                 solutions related to
waste-hauling fees,                                                                                                   school lunch waste.
increased pollution                                                                                                   Implementing or
from fossil fuel                                                                                                      expanding school
emissions, more                                                                                                       recycling programs to
truck traffic, and                                                                                                    prevent recyclable
greater wear and tear                                                                                                 materials from going
on public roads.                                                                                                      to the landfill or
    The good news is                                                                                                  incinerator.
that lunch habits                                                                                                     Instituting or
have started to                                                                                                       expanding an onsite
change. In some                                                                                                       composting program
school districts,                                                                                                     to divert food waste
environment-                                                                                                          for use in a school
conscious parents,                                                                                                    garden or in planter
teachers, school                                                                                                      boxes.
                                                only and some on lunches brought from
administrators, and environmental organi-                                                         Hanging signs or posters about waste-
                                                home, while many tackle both. Some
zations are reducing school lunch waste by                                                        free lunches in classrooms, the
                                                schools encourage students to pack waste-
implementing waste-free lunch programs.                                                           lunchroom, and other common areas.
                                                free lunches every day, while others hold
Their aim is not only to reduce campus                                                            Assembling a display or bulletin board to
                                                waste-free lunch days once a week, once a
waste, but also to teach students that small                                                      provide lunch-making ideas and
                                                month, or once a year for Earth Day. Many
changes in their daily routines can have a                                                        examples of waste-free lunch dos and
                                                programs develop gradually, starting with a
very large impact on the environment and                                                          don’ts.
                                                one-week waste-free lunch program the
on their personal health. These programs                                                          Organizing student recycling teams or
                                                first year, then expanding to once a week or
help schools to save money, and increase                                                          training students as waste managers so
                                                once a month the second year, and then
the likelihood that families will choose                                                          that students are involved and take
                                                launching a more comprehensive program
fresh fruits, vegetables, and whole grains                                                        responsibility for their actions. In
                                                the following year. Some schools fully
over highly processed, prepackaged meats                                                          addition to monitoring and emptying
                                                integrate their waste-free lunch program
and salty or sugary snacks.                                                                       recycling bins, students can help to
                                                with their curriculum or school gardening
                                                program. Some rely on intrinsic motiva-           educate their peers by presenting
What is a Waste-free Lunch Program?
                                                tion, while others offer incentives such as       workshops and creating informational
A waste-free lunch contains no throwaway
                                                prizes.                                           posters.
packaging and produces no food waste.
The typical homemade waste-free lunch is             The components of a waste-free lunch       No matter what activities you choose,
packed in a lunch box or backpack. The          program vary from school to school, but         starting a waste-free lunch program requires

F A L L   2 0 0 4                                                                                                    Peel Passages | 21
E D U C A T I O N A L                I S S U E S

                                                     common areas where all members of the           parents, custodians, and students. If you
 Waste-Free Lunch                                    school community can see them. (see             su cc ee d in re du ci ng wa st e- ha ul in g
 Tips for Parents                                    www.mari nefm .org/ wast e-fr ee-m onth -
                                                     2002.html for examples)
                                                                                                     fees—either by reducing the size or the
                                                                                                     number of dumpsters—make sure that
   Include items that can be purchased in                                                            everyone in your school community knows
   bulk, such as dried fruit and nuts.           Students: Educating students about the              about it. Contact your local newspapers
   Include items that come in their own          impact of their food choices on the envi-           and solid waste agency, too, to share with
   natural wrappings, such as bananas,           ronment is a key component of any waste-            your community what your school is doing
   oranges, and hard-boiled eggs.                free lunch program. The aim, of course, is          for the local environment.
   Pack water in a refillable bottle instead     to influence not only the choices they
   of prepackaged sugary drinks. It's            make at lunchtime, but also those they
   healthier, less expensive, and easier to                                                          Making it Last
                                                 make all day, every day. Here are some              To keep your program alive, your school
   wipe clean if it spills or leaks.
                                                 suggested activities:                               must continue to communicate with
   To avoid food waste, cut fruits and               Conduct trash audits with students and
   vegetables into pieces so that your child                                                         families and staff. Have students create
                                                     use the information to teach math (i.e.,        new and inventive reminder posters and
   can eat some at lunchtime and save the
   rest for a later snack.                           arithmetic, graphs, tables, word                replace any that are not in good condition.
                                                     problems).                                      Continually send out reminders, notes of
   Use a thermos or other reusable bottle
   for drinks, reusable plastic containers for       Facilitate group discussions about              praise and tips for packing waste-free
   foods, and utensils that can be washed            reducing lunch trash and other ways that        lunches. As new families enter the school,
   and reused.                                       students can conserve resources.                make sure they are made aware of the
   Label all containers and water bottles to         Find out where your school’s trash ends         school’s efforts to reduce waste. Share with
   ensure they will make it back home.               up. If it goes into a landfill, have students   families and staff what other schools are
                                                     find out where the landfill is, when it is      doing to reduce waste. Involve students in
   Purchase (or make) cloth napkins that
   your child can decorate with fabric paint,        estimated to reach capacity, and what the       trash audits throughout the year. Consider
   being sure to include his or her name in          community plans to do once it is full. If       purchasing a (second-hand?) school trophy
   case a napkin gets left behind at school.         possible, take students on a field trip to      that can be awarded each week to the class
                                                     the landfill or to a recycling facility.        that produces the least waste by weight or
   Avoid throwaway bags, plastic wrap, foil,
   polystyrene, single-use cans and cartons,         Involve students in art projects using          brings the highest number of waste-free
   and paper napkins.                                salvaged materials, and have students           lunches. Make sure that worm boxes and
                                                     estimate how much new material they             recycling bins are conveniently and promi-
   Pack lunches in lunch boxes, small packs,
   or cloth bags.                                    have avoided using. Put the artwork on          nently placed where students can use
                                                     display in the lunchroom.                       them. And enlist the ongoing help of
   Invite children to help plan, prepare, and                                                        parents and staff to ensure that lunch
   pack their own lunches.                           Involve students in on-campus recycling
                                                     and composting.                                 clean-up procedures are properly adhered
   Prepare extra food at dinnertime and                                                              to.
                                                     Start a worm composting program to
   use leftovers for lunches.                                                                            Waste-free lunch programs help schools
                                                     eliminate lunchtime food waste and to
   Minimize the morning rush by packing              show students how soil is enriched              reduce waste and save money. If every
   lunches the night before and storing              naturally.                                      child attending elementary school packed a
   them in the refrigerator overnight.                                                               waste-free lunch, billions of pounds of
                                                     Conduct food choice workshops in
                                                     which students learn about the                  lunch waste could be diverted from the
cooperation, patience, and communication.            ingredients of processed foods. For             waste stream. That’s a lot of trash, and that
Trying to change human behaviour is always           example, have students find out how             translates into potentially huge savings for
challenging, but in the many communities             much sugar and food colouring is in soft        our families, our schools, and our environ-
where waste-free lunch programs are being            drinks and juice-flavored drinks. Ask           ment.
implemented, families and schools are                them to decide what constitutes a
meeting that challenge with enthusiasm and           healthful school snack, and discuss why         Amy Hemmert is a teacher, small business owner and
                                                                                                     mother of two school-age children in Santa Cruz,
pride.                                               it important to provide the body with           California. She is the author of several books, including
                                                     essential nutrients. Talk about the             The Laptop Lunch User’s Guide: Fresh Ideas for
Implementing a Program                               benefits of drinking water. If appropriate,     Packing Wholesome, Earth-friendly Lunches Your
                                                     discuss the causes and symptoms of              Kids Will Love <>.
Parents: Since parents usually make the
lunch decisions, it is essential to get them         obesity, heart disease, high blood
                                                     pressure, sleep apnea, and type 2               Resources
on board as soon as possible. You can                                                       <>:
communicate with them through the                    diabetes.                                       Sample letters to families, information on trash
school newsletter, by phone, or by email.            Integrate your waste-free lunch program         audits, classroom activities and success stories.
Listed below are some opportunities for              with a school gardening program so that
                                                     students connect their lunch with life          Tips on organizing waste-free lunches, including
communicating with parents.
                                                     cycles.                                         contest suggestions.
    After you’ve done an initial trash audit,
                                                     Have students research a particular issue
    send a letter home to parents describing                                                         Trash Goes to School, Cornell Waste Management
                                                     related to food or the environment and          Institute <>: Classroom
    what you found. Explain that the amount
                                                     present their findings to the class.            activities for Grades K-12, sample letter to teachers,
    of waste generated at lunchtime has a
                                                                                                     and background information.
    negative impact on both the                  A word of caution: No child should ever be
    environment and the school budget.           singled out for not packing a waste-free            Global Stewards <>: The
                                                                                                     “Pack a Waste-Free Lunch” page provides lunch-
    Encourage them to use less disposable        lunch, as young children are rarely respon-
                                                                                                     waste statistics and tips.
    packaging.                                   sible for their lunch choices. Families make
    Send home a detailed letter explaining       decisions based, in part, on their lifestyle,       Recycling Council of Ontario <>: A
                                                                                                     “3Rs Waste Reduction Survey” that can be adapted.
    what parents can do to reduce lunchtime      values, and socio-economic background.
    waste (see Tips for Parents above).          Avoid activities that single out individual         Rethinking Recycling, Oregon Department of
                                                 students.                                           Environmental Quality <>: This
    Congratulate families for packing
                                                                                                     site offers a waste reduction curriculum for Grades
    lunches in reusable containers and                                                               K-5 that can be adapted for use anywhere.
    remind them to label containers, lunch       Measuring Success
                                                                                                     San Mateo County California Recycleworks
    boxes, thermoses, and reusable drink         Before implementing the waste-free lunch
                                                                                                     <>: Information on packing a
    bottles so that these can be returned if     program, decide how to measure its suc-             no-waste lunch, as well as on waste audits, worm
    they are lost or forgotten.                  cess. You may want to analyze and graph             composting and starting a composting program.
    Post waste-free lunch reminders in the       your trash audit results and, perhaps,
    lunch area, in classrooms, and in            collect anecdotal evidence from teachers,

22 | Peel Passages                                                                                                                       F A L L    2 0 0 4
                                                                                             E D U C A T I O N A L             I S S U E S

Getting a Read on the
Privatization of Education
by Bernie Froese-Germain, Researcher, Professional Development Services, Canadian Teachers’ Federation
Powerful Forces Eroding Public                    private companies.                              annual event. In addition, through DFAIT,
Education                                             With reference to the impact of neo-        the federal government actively promotes
Canadians have become used to hearing             liberal globalization on the British school     the education industry abroad through the
about the creeping privatization of health        system, Hatcher identifies the emergence        Education Marketing Board and other
care—private for-profit clinics, user fees,       of three interconnected yet distinct agen-      initiatives. For its part, Industry Canada
public-private partnerships for hospital          das agendas that resonate well beyond           also provides information on Canada’s
services and infrastructure.                      England’s borders:                              education and training industry, and has
    Around the globe, corporate interests             a business agenda for what the school       created a “Public-Private Partnership
and market forces are also shaping educa-             system should do: above all, to produce     Office” on its website with a mandate to
tion systems in fundamental ways: large-              human capital for competitiveness in the    “increase awareness of public-private
scale voucher programs in Colombia and                global economy;                             partnerships by providing a centre of
Chile; extensive private school manage-               an agenda for how it should do it most      knowledge and expertise on P3 issues.”
ment in the Netherlands; private school               efficiently: by adopting a business model
liberalization in the Czech Republic;                 of management and operation;                The Many Faces of Privatization
universal public school choice and the                an agenda for what business itself should   The forces described by Hatcher and others
creation of a competitive education market            do within the school system: opening up     are playing themselves out in the incre-
in England. UNESCO reports that “privat-              state education systems to private for-     mental privatization and commercializa-
ization is one of the hottest issues cur-             profit companies (or educational            tion of Canadian K-12 education, which is
rently being debated in the education                 management organizations as they are        assuming various forms. McAdie (2002)
sector.” (Belfield & Levin, 2002, p. 7)               known).                                     usefully distinguishes between private
    In the U.S., smaller scale voucher                                                            monies used for public education—e.g.,
initiatives have been established in Florida      Pressures for increased trade liberalization    school fundraising for basic items like
(the largest U.S. program to date), as well       in education services through pro-              textbooks, classroom supplies, library
as Wisconsin (Milwaukee) and Ohio                 privatization trade pacts like the GATS and     books and computers; teachers buying
(Cleveland). The November issue of                the FTAA, coupled with the rapidly              school materials out-of-pocket; and corpo-
EdInvest News, which describes                                                                                  rate sponsorships and dona-
itself as a “service of the World                                                                               tions; and public monies used
Bank Group…[to] provide                                                                                         for private education—e.g.,
information for making private         “Privatization is one of the hottest                                     through charter schools,
investment in education possi-                                                                                  vouchers, and government
ble on a global scale,” cheer-          issues currently being debated in                                       funding for private schools.
fully notes that:                                                                                                 Several provinces currently
    In recent years, the US                   the education sector.”                                            provide public funding for
    education system has seen a                                                                                 private schools, in most cases
    near-avalanche of interest,                                                                                 through a per-pupil grant that
    research, and policy reform in educa-         expanding technology-driven multi-billion       goes directly to the school (an education
    tion privatization and school choice.         dollar global education industry, will          voucher in the form of a private school
    Federal legislation (‘No Child Left           almost certainly advance these agendas,         tuition tax credit introduced by the former
    Behind’ Act) includes many pro-               threatening public education.                   Conservative regime in Ontario has been
    privatization proposals; education                It is in this climate that the door has     scrapped under the new Liberal govern-
    vouchers are now being actively               opened to growing federal involvement in        ment). While private schools still represent
    promoted across the country; 2,700            Canadian education over the past decade.        a relatively small segment of the education
    charter schools now educate over half a       As Bruno-Jofré and Henley (2002) explain,       system—in terms of students, teachers and
    million students across 37 states; K-12       “the federal government’s enthusiasm for        schools—compared to public schools,
    tax credit and tax deduction programs         the human capital model of economic             they’ve experienced steady growth in
    to subsidize private schools are grow-        development, coupled with the adoption of       recent years. In 2001-02, the number of
    ing; and home-schooling—the ultimate          the view that education should be treated       full-time private school teachers increased
    in privatization—is increasingly              like any other commodity for trading            by about 4.3%, the number of schools
    popular. Currently, privatization and         purposes, has provided the justification for    increased by 4% and enrolments grew by
    school choice is the primary reform           this renewed involvement.” (p. 10) They         2.6%. Over the same period, public schools
    strategy for improving America’s              focus, in particular, on the Department of      and student enrolments experienced a
    schools. (Latham, 2003)                       Foreign Affairs and International Trade         slight decline. (Canadian Teachers’ Federa-
                                                  (DFAIT) and, through it and other depart-       tion, 2002)
Belfield and Levin define privatization as        ments such as Industry Canada, the strong           Hargreaves (2003) describes the general
the transfer of an activity, asset or responsi-   and explicit support of the federal govern-     policy response to the growing number of
bility from the government to the private         ment for the nascent Canadian education         parents seeking out private education for
domain (p. 19). More specifically, this           industry. This has included DFAIT co-           their children as the “paradoxical” creation
involves transferring responsibility for          sponsoring with several corporate partners      within the public system of “business- and
providing, regulating and financing educa-        the Canadian Education Industry Summit          economy-class categories of education”
tion from the state to individuals and            in 1997, which has since become an              (pp. 168-169). Middle class families are

F A L L   2 0 0 4                                                                                                      Peel Passages | 23
E D U C A T I O N A L               I S S U E S

being enticed to stay in public schools with      Vancouver, Ottawa and Toronto charging           ment is saying, ’If we’re not giving you
what essentially amounts to elements of a         annual fees of $10,000 or more. It’s easy to     enough money, go out and make some.’ ”
two-tiered system e.g., higher tracks, gifted     see how the ability to recruit even small        (McLellan, 2003)
classes, magnet schools and other schools         numbers of international students can                In addition to advocating for a fully
of choice.                                        make a big difference to a school board’s        funded, inclusive public education system
    A gradual shift is discernible with           bottom line (Bruno-Jofré & Henley, 2002).        and reaffirming its longstanding opposition
regard to the balance between private and             Ot he r ex am pl es of pr iv at iz at io n   to privatization and commercialization, the
public education expenditure (the latter of       abound , includ ing the use of privat e          2003 CTF General Meeting condemned the
course still makes up the bulk of the             tutoring and test-preparation services and       practice of school districts forming busi-
funding). Between 1997-98 and 2001-02,            the contracting out of custodial, mainte-        ness companies and the legislation that
private expenditure increased from $9             nance, food and transportation services.         allows for this.
billion to $10.5 billion ($7.4 billion for        There are also reports of the outsourcing of
post-secondary, $3.1 billion for elementary-      instruction in post-secondary institutions.
secondary), representing a 16% increase,          (Brouillette, 2003)                              Is the “Partnership” in P3s a
and four times the increase in public                 School boards are signing “exclusive”        Misnomer?
expenditures over this period. While the          marketing contracts with food and bever-         Trendy public-private partnerships (or P3s)
shift to private funding sources is particu-      age companies such as Coke and Pepsi to          are also taking hold in education as in
larly evident in post-secondary educa-            make up for funding shortfalls. Some soft        other sectors such as health care and
tion—escalating tuition fees accounting for       drink companies are offering bonus com-          transportation. Fuller (2003) defines P3s as:
a considerable chunk of this, I was sur-          missions as an incentive for schools to              a kind of hybrid approach to creating
prised to find that 7% of the total expendi-      boost their students’ consumption of a               new government infrastructure, where
ture for elementary-secondary education in        product (for a good primer on exclusive              the government contracts with the
Canada came from private sources in 2001-         cola contracts, see Dunsmore, 2001). Two             private sector to design and build,
02, reaching a high of over 10% in Alberta        large Ontario school boards, Peel District           sometimes finance, and sometimes
and Quebec. Also, 9% of Canadian house-           and York Region District, were recently              operate new public facilities such as
holds paid pre-elementary and elementary-         ordered by the privacy commissioner to               schools and hospitals. With these
secondary tuition fees in 2000, an average        make the ir con fid ent ial mul ti- mil lio n        arrangements, the private sector often
of $974 per household (although there is          dollar cola deals public, as a result of the         ends up owning the public facilities
no breakdown between the two levels).             diligent efforts of a 15-year-old high school        and leasing them back to the govern-
The average tuition ranged from just under        student and his father.                              ment. (p. 4)
$200 in Saskatchewan to nearly $2,000 in              In the wake of this, the Ontario govern-
Ontario. (Canadian Education Statistics           ment’s proposed ban on junk food in              As the name suggests, P3s fall somewhere
Council, 2003)                                    elementary schools comes as welcome              on a continuum between the public and
    This largely aggregate data tells us little   news (B.C.’s Minister of Education is also       private domains. New Brunswick, Nova
about the specific sources of                                                                                    Scotia and other jurisdictions
private funding. One thing                                                                                       have used P3s to finance new
does seem certain—incidental                                                                                     school construction. In
fees and school fundraising            Nova Scotia’s P3 experiment…has                                           particular, Nova Scotia’s P3
are on a sharp upward trend.                                                                                     experiment in which the
According to People for
                                        proven to be a dramatic failure.                                         government contracted the
Education’s most recent                                                                                          construction of over 30 new
tracking reports, an estimated                                                                                   P3 schools (also known as
$38.5 million was raised by elementary            considering this idea). So does the soft         lease-back schools) to a local private
school communities across Ontario in the          drink industry’s announcement that it will       consortium has proven to be a dramatic
2002-03 school year, with the top 10% of          be pulling carbonated beverages from all         failure. In addition to costing $32 million
schools raising as much money as the              elementary and middle school vending             more than if they had been publicly
bottom 53%. Some schools brought in as            machines by the start of the 2004-05 school      financed, the motives underlying the Nova
much as $60,000. At the secondary level,          year (water, juices and sugary sports drinks     Scotia P3 project were political—this
parents, students and teachers raised about       will stay and cola drinks will still be          arrangement allowed the government to
$14 million province-wide, while local            available in cafeterias as well as high          keep the cost of the schools off its books in
businesses, corporations, community               schools). Child obesity and other health         an attempt to reduce the apparent size of
associations and alumni kicked in an              concerns (and pop sales which have               the provincial deficit. (Robertson, 2003)
additional $10 million.                           levelled off or declined?), rather than              Numerous other problems surfaced
    School fundraising reinforces the             commercialism or privatization, appear to        including the location of new schools
problematic notion of education as a              be the overriding issues here. All of this is    being determined by corporate interest
charity, rather than as a basic human and         unlikely to put an end to exclusive agree-       rather than educational need. School
social right. It deepens inequities between       ments. According to the soft drink industry      access for students and the community was
schools and their communities because, as         lobby group, Refreshments Canada, “the           limited after school hours as the facility
noted, working class neighbourhoods have          decision [to replace pop with juices and         and its state of the art technology were
much more difficulty raising money than           other drinks] shouldn’t affect how the           often rented out by the corporate owners,
affluent ones. One might say that fundrais-       companies work with the school boards.”          as stipulated in the lease, to conduct
ing is becoming as entrenched as the local        (Livingston, 2004)                               private training courses. As with exclusive
food bank—recall that the latter was                  The B.C. government has gone so far as       marketing deals and school district busi-
originally intended as a stop-gap poverty         to amend the provincial School Act to            ness company plans and finances, there is
measure.                                          allow school boards to set up private            a serious lack of public accountability with
    In a period of declining provincial           companies for business purposes, the             P3s as the contracts are cloaked in secrecy.
education funding, the lucrative “trade in        profits of which can be used for educa-              Because much of what we know about
international students” is picking up             tional programs. To date, eight school           P3s and other privatization initiatives
steam, with foreign fee-paying students           districts have created business companies,       remains anecdotal and piecemeal in
being aggressively recruited for high             in some cases to provide education to            nature, the bigger picture continues to
schools by school boards (in some cases           foreign students living in B.C. or abroad,       elude us. The need to systematically
through federal “Team Canada” trade               and other districts are moving to do the         collect national baseline data to assess the
missions). Tuition fees for international         same. Kuehn remarks that, “this is clearly       nature and extent of this phenomenon is
students are exorbitant, with boards in           related to the issue of funding. The govern-     becoming more urgent, as there is every

24 | Peel Passages                                                                                                             F A L L   2 0 0 4
                                                                                                           E D U C A T I O N A L                     I S S U E S

ind ica tio n tha t the tre nds des cri bed       there is a need for citizens to stand back                  Latham, M. (2003, Nov.).“Facilitating Investment in
above—as well as newer, stranger vari-            and say to the public authorities: It is your               the Global Education Market.” EdInvest News. URL:
ants—will continue into the foreseeable           obligation to raise the funds and to deliver
future.                                           universal public education. It is not our
    It would also be worthwhile to gauge          responsibility to undermine that universal-                 Livingston, G. (2004, Jan. 6). “Taking Soft Drinks Out
                                                                                                              of Schools Only First Step to Deal with Youth
public attitudes toward education privat-         ity. Over to you.                                           Health.” CP Wire.
ization: What do Canadians think about it?
What do they recognize as privatization?          References                                                            .
                                                                                                              McAdie, P (2002, April). “Private Money for Public
                                                  Belfield, C. R., & Levin, H. M. (2002). Education           Education: Private Fundraising Speeds Move to
Are there perceived grey areas? For exam-
                                                  Privatization: Causes, Consequences and Planning            Privatizing Education.”CCPA Monitor, 8(10), pp.
ple, are people aware that school fundrais-       Implications. Paris: International Institute for            36–37.
ing is, consistent with the definition            Educational Planning, UNESCO.
provided earlier, a form of privatization?                                                                    McLellan,W. (2003, Dec. 10). “School Districts Create
                                                  Brouillette,V. (2003, Nov.–Dec.).“Outsourcing in            Companies to Raise Cash.” Vancouver Province, p. A6.
                                                  Institutions of Higher Education: A Spreading               People for Education (2003, May). The 2003
“Over To You”—A Final Word                        Practice.”CSQ News, 19(2), p. 5.                            Elementary School Tracking Report. Six Years of the
I’ll give the last word on this issue to John     Bruno-Jofré, R., & Henley, D. (2002, June). “The            Funding Formula: Failing Ontario’s Students. Toronto.
Ralston Saul, who lays bare the hard truth        Canadian Education Industry: An Historical Critique         People for Education (2003, March). The 2003
about school-based fundraising and issues         of Education as Merchandise.”Canadian and                   Secondary School Tracking Report. Diminishing
a broad challenge to us all, especially our       International Education, 31(1), pp. 1–18.                   Support in a Harsher Environment. Toronto.
political leaders and decision-makers:            Canadian Education Statistics Council (2003).               Robertson, H. J. (2003, April). “Why P3 Schools are D4
     The whole idea of private fundraising        Education Indicators in Canada: Report of the Pan-          Schools, or How Public-Private Partnerships Lead to
     for public schools is the first step         Canadian Education Indicators Program 2003.                 Disillusionment, Dirty Dealings and Debt.” In Fuller,
                                                  Ottawa: Statistics Canada / CMEC.                           S. (ed.),Assessing the Record of Public-Private
     towards introducing a class based
                                                  Canadian Teachers’ Federation (2002, Sept.).                Partnerships. Proceedings of a CCPA-BC Public Forum
     society into Canada. Private fundraising
                                                  “Virtually No Growth in Canada’s Public School              (pp. 8-13). Vancouver: Canadian Centre for Policy
     is, in and of itself, a form of exclusion.                                                               Alternatives-BC Office.
                                                  Demographics as Private School Sector Continues
                                                  to Expand in 2001-02.” Economic Services Notes, pp.         Saul, J. R. (2002, Fall). “In Defence of Public
Let me add a tougher comment. By going            1–4.                                                        Education.” Horizons, 1(1), pp. 8–14.
out and spending a great deal of their
                                                  Dunsmore, D. (2001, Mar.). “Cola Vending Machines:
valuable time fundraising, principals,                                                      .
                                                  ’Rich’ Contracts That May Not Be So ’Sweet’” BCTF
teachers and parents are actually collabo-        Teacher Newsmagazine, 13(5), p. 14.
rating in the gradual privatization of the
                                                  Fuller, S. (ed.). (2003, April).Assessing the Record of
public school system. They are making             Public-Private Partnerships. Proceedings of a CCPA-BC
privatization easier for those who do not         Public Forum. Vancouver: Canadian Centre for Policy
wish to take public responsibility for            Alternatives-BC Office.
raising the necessary amounts of public           Hargreaves, A. (2003).Teaching In the Knowledge
money. I often feel we would do better to         Society: Education In the Age of Insecurity. New York:
stand back and to say openly that this is a       Teachers College Press.
public system and that if society and its         Hatcher, R. (2003). “Business Agendas and School
leaders are not willing to fund the system,       Education in England.” (Draft paper).
then we collectively, and they specifically,      Industry Canada. “Public-Private Partnership (P3)
must all take responsibility for the decline      Office.” URL:
in the education of our own children and
the children of our fellow citizens. Perhaps      bdpr.nsf/vwGeneratedInterE/Home

Junior Elementary Music Makers
by Wendy Wilson, Alloa PS and Kim Alderman, Derry West Village PS
“Fa la la…” went the beautiful Thomas             that she presented. How lucky the students                  grams in Peel schools. We are beginning
Street Choir on Thursday, October 21 as           were from Thomas Street to have a chance                    our thirteenth year of networking with Peel
the Junior Elementary Music Makers                to work with this famous choral conductor!                  teachers. Watch for upcoming workshops:
(JEMMS) group hosted a choral workshop                Jean’s book, Sound Advice: Becoming a                   Band In A Box (February 9); Orff Fun (April
for elementary and secondary music                Better Children’s Choir Conductor, was                      5); Sip and Sing (June 9). Please e-mail
teachers in Peel. The workshop offered a          made available for all to purchase at a                     Joan Cobbold at Cooksville Creek PS if you
first-hand glance at the Canadian treasure,       reduced, JEMMS subsidized cost. The                         would like to be added to our mailing list.
Jean Ashworth Bartle, conducting the              workshop was from 4:00 to 7:30 pm. At
Thomas Street Middle School Choir.                dinner break, we enjoyed pizza and coffee
     Jean is the founder and director of the      hosted by the JEMMS team. Ninety people
Toronto Children’s Chorus which boasts            attended. It was great having so many
over three hundred young voices, ages             music educators in one place so that
7–17, who learn to sing and perform each          everyone could share experiences and chat.
year with one shared passion: choral                  We are thankful to Jean Ashworth
excellence. The children are exposed to           Bartle for coming to Peel to share her
touring, recording and many award-                expertise with Peel teachers. It was a
winning performances.                             wonderful evening and learning experience
     We were very lucky to watch Jean work        for all. JEMMS thanks Carole Anderson
with Carole Anderson’s choir from Thomas          and her Thomas Street Choir for hosting
Street Middle School. She took us through         this event. We had a wonderful evening
several choral warm-ups and demonstrated          and everyone went home humming.
what we could potentially do with our                 JEMMS is a group of teachers helping
choirs. We enjoyed listening to the songs         teachers to provide the best music pro-                     Jean Ashworth Bartle addresses JEMMs

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A R O U N D           P E E L

Justice for the Hilton Hotel Workers!
by Matthew Curran, Political Action Chair
                         On October 18, the            (unlike most hotels all gratuity fees go       Chelsea Hotel in Toronto at the last minute
                         management of the             directly to the hotel and not the servers).    in order to ensure representatives did not
                         Hilton Airport hotel      Despite the union’s attempts to negotiate          cross the picket line.
                         locked out 150            fairly, the management decided to lock out             On November 1, Peel Local teachers
                         members of Unite          their workers. The union has filed charges         demonstrated solidarity with the locked
                         Here Local 75. This       with the Ontario Labour Relations Board            out workers and marched on the picket
                         is the first time in      arguing that the hotel negotiated in bad faith.    line. Peel teachers were well received on
                         the Hotel’s history       Since the beginning of the lockout other           the line and their support greatly appreci-
                         that labour conflict      unions have provided strike support such as        ated, as many of the workers live in Peel
                         has occurred. The         the Ontario Elementary Catholic Teachers’          and their children attend our schools. It is
workers have been without a contract since         Association which would not cross the              important that the Peel Local demonstrate
April 2004 and were asking for simple and          picket lines.                                      solidarity with the working families in our
reasonable demands such as:                            ETFO also supported the Hilton work-           community. Solidarity pickets occur at the
    parity with other hotel workers in             ers by refusing to cross the picket lines.         hotel every Thursday. For more informa-
    Toronto in relation to their wages and         ETFO provincial staff worked tirelessly to         tion visit Unite Here’s website:
    pension benefits;                              change the location of the Provincial    
    respect for their work;                        Representative Council Meeting that was to
    the right for banquet servers to keep at       take place at the hotel. Over 300 local
    least a portion of the tips they earn          representatives were relocated to the Delta

On November 1, Peel Local teachers demonstrated solidarity with the locked out Hilton workers. It is important that Peel Teachers support the working
families in our community.

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Staff Lines
Somerset Drive PS                              Darryl Menezes returned from a year’s           Munden Park PS
Everyone returned revived and refreshed        leave to care for his very young children       Where did that summer go…all 10 blissful
following a great summer vacation. Wel-        (Mr. Mum). Apparently Darryl has                weeks! We hope Katherine Walton and
come to a few new faces: Bernadette            invented an automatic diaper changer and        Anita Hagerman are enjoying their new
Bedard, Aaron Onyskiw and Tania Del            disposer, which can easily be adapted to        schools. We miss you. Gisela Duarte, thank
Rosso; welcome back everyone. We are           clean chalkboards (no chalkboard rash           you for hosting our first staff meeting in
anticipating another great year. Angelo        guaranteed!) On a more serious note, we         your beautiful garden. What a wonderful
Castellana spent the summer thinking           had to bid farewell to two Edenrose “stal-      relaxing way to start the year. The Munden
about his move into the new house in           warts”—Jane Farrell and Lynda Savage            Movers had 14 members on our annual
September and it is now a fait a compli.       both now early retired and enjoying their       Run-for-the-Cure team this year. Our team
Lorianne Stetson made her summerly trip        freedom. Jane’s now a grandmother and           raised over $2000 for breast cancer. Many
back to Prince Edward Island. Jill Dawson      Lynda, whose husband is a pilot, is cavort-     thanks to all our donors. Thank you to the
just popped down to Australia for a bit.       ing across the skies. A warm and hearty         first catering team for the black and orange
George Alcock has his tires rotated and oil    welcome to several new teachers to              culinary delights at our Halloween lun-
changed now all he needs is a vehicle.         Edenrose—Karen Mahoney and Marina               cheon.
That’s all for now!                            Mathew (Kindergarten), Sheri Reid (Grade
                                               2), Alyson Hunter and Brenda McKay
                                               (Grade 3), Jana Parker (Physical Health
                                               Disabilities Class) and her capable assis-
Darcel Avenue Senior PS                        tants Kelly Guthrie, Geetha Thakur, Rabeah
We are delighted to welcome the following      Sheik, Kathy Strachan, Anju Singla, and
new staff members to our merry little          Anne Silver (French). Welcome back to
family: Wayne Warren, Yemi Adegbite,           Christina Boutis, Behaviour TA. And a
Susan Barker, Andrea Carnegie, Chan Ho,        warm and special welcome back to Jane
Rooxana Jummun, Kiba Moy, Roger Stew-          Jarrell. Well, Natalie Kulik didn’t read the
art, Gurmeet Gill, and Alimah Chutkae. We      don’t drink the water sign and conse-
have been busy already this year partici-      quently will be taking maternity leave.
pating in exciting events such as the Terry    Sandra Hachard will fill in for Natalie. Stay
Fox Run, Hoops for Heart Fundraising and       away from Edenrose water Sandra!
the United Nations Peace Day, hosted at
Darcel School under the guidance of our
Principal, Patrika Daws. We anticipate the                                                     Team captain Patti Sullivan, husband Pat and
                                               Morton Way PS                                   mother Birdie, Umberto and Gisela Duarte,
balance of the school year with high hopes                                                     Mark and Cicily Partington, Bella and Grace (in
for great successes!                           Morton Way is off to a great start again this
                                                                                               stroller) and Michael Mc Kibbon, Kirti and
                                               year. We had an appreciation assembly for       Bhoopinder Johal and Sheldon and Anne Coles.
                                               our former vice principal, Michael Logue,
                                               who has moved on to Macville PS. We also
Edenrose PS                                    welcome Michael’s replacements, Nigel
Summer has come and gone and already           Hussey and Anne Goldenberg. The new
Fall motifs, symbols and colours decorate      teachers to Morton Way include Kindeel
the classrooms and halls at Edenrose.          Elahi, Joanne Boksa, and Beth Luong in
Already the trio of Karen Sykes, Wendy         Kindergarten. We are quite appreciative of
Ruffle and Faye Chan’s annual grade four       our new staff members: Leanne Brooks and
thanksgiving feast—which included roast        Tracy McGlaughlin-Camara have joined
turkey and all the delectable trim-            the Grade 3 team. Kara Werth is teaching in
mings—for students and parents is history      Grade 4 and Lisa O’Blenis is the new
(the smiles remain!). Gail Price has given     member on the Grade 5 team. Cecile
new meaning to the term “lift-off ”. Gail’s    Davies is teaching French and Manju Lota
Grade 2 students are planting tomato seeds     is with the ESL/ELD team. Our new teach-
pasteurized in outer space! Okay Gail, let’s   ing assistants are Robyn Caissie and Janet
have a serious chat about the missing          Stoddard. We had a staff Halloween get-
goldfish and hamster and those little green    together at Linda Kieswetter’s home.
munchkins sharpening pencils for you           Everyone enjoyed the fun and creative
before the kids hit your room in the morn-     costumes. We also congratulate Grade 3
ing! Accolades to Wendy Ruffle who ran in      teacher Colette Redmond. She and Jamie
the Toronto Waterfront Marathon fall           were married during the summer. Congrat-
classic in a brilliant time! Wendy has her     ulations to them both.
eyes on Boston and we wish her luck. Jana
Parker also did wonders in her charity run
for Breast Cancer. Look who’s smiling!

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