School District 43 teachers and parents to rally after layoffs

Vancouver, BC, Canada / (CKNW AM) AM980

Coquitlam teachers and parents will rally outside two schools Tuesday in the wake of jobs cuts the district says are necessary to balance the budget in the wake of a 13-million dollar deficit.

Coquitlam Teachers’ Association president Charley King says while 632 teachers were issued layoff notices, he expects at least 90 people will not be hired back in September as the district cuts 90 positions.

“Last year we had a number of teachers on pins and needles and many teachers not recalled until the last minute, and many teachers not recalled until well into the school year, I expect it to be a really tense summer, I think there will be an awful lot of teachers that aren’t recalled by September, and I think there’s going to be an awful lot of angst out there.”

King puts the blame squarely on the provincial government.

“If you look at our community it’s growing, there is no issue of declining enrolment here; the student to educator ratio has been increased at least three times in the last decade, which means that there are more students per teacher. This is not an issue of declining enrolment; this is an issue of declining support from the provincial government for public education.”

Teachers, who are encouraged to wear black and carry a sign with their layoff number, will gather at 330pm along Como Lake Avenue between Hillcrest middle school and Dr. Charles Best.

Comments

  1. We have about $60 billion in provincial debt. In order to maintain our credit rating and keep borrowing costs low we need to maintain a relatively balanced budget. Please tell us what you want to cut in order to pay for education.

    • What would I sacrifice to stop the erosion of education? Not the Premier’s Communications staff (largest in history), not Pamela Martin’s salary for tweeting, I would increase the money meant for education that goes to Carbon Tax and in turn subsidizes businesses, and can we have the Times of India Film Awards every year in lieu of paying those damned teachers? A look through the public sector salaries shows millions of dollars spent on managerial positions in the Health Authorities, upward of 300k per annum. Wouldn’t touch those. A new tunnel to replace the George Massey in time for the next election gets more votes than a good education system. Nope. Wouldn’t change a thing. Maybe cut a bit more. Private schools are the way to go, and more and more schools are losing students to private education which in turn strangles the public system’s budget ever more. The plan is working! Margaret Thatcher would be proud.

  2. And these Stupid Goofy teachers are teaching our kids?! Go figure. What cant they figure out. No More Money!! You fought the last election on it and we voted. You LOST. No More Tax Increases. Thats it – No More!!!!

  3. Don’t you think there’s a price to pay for underfunded schools? The kids are paying the price. This government needs to stop giving tax breaks to big companies who make donations to the BC Liberals. Education children in BC to be the tops in Canada should be a priority, not just for kids in private schools.

    • Stop playing politics with our children, teachers are only looking to feather their own pockets. The majority of the budget is teachers wages and benefits around 95% I believe, This is the reason we put our girls into Independent school where teachers actually put our children first.

  4. Teachers need to stop subsidizing their classes with their own money. When I taught elementary school, I would spend at least $2000 on supplies that my school couldn’t pay for due to lack of funds. If or when parents see classroom conditions without teachers paying out of their own pocket, THEN the government will get the message that they’re not funding schools properly. I notice parents already in the news protesting cuts. Good on them!

  5. Shouldn’t all teachers, aside from those who teach summer school, be getting laid off every year? They’re the ones fighting the change in the calendar so why should they still be getting paid and having benefits paid for during the 2 months of summer holidays that they demand?

    • No. I might be anti-BCTF and think wandering down some street wearing black is a corny juvenile way to make a statement but I don’t agree with your suggestion that all teachers be laid off every year. Teaching is still an honourable career and needs more respect than that. They do have a choice to be paid over 10 months or spread out over 12.

  6. Tenured teachers are salaried employees. They have a continuing 12 month contract that rolls over each year. They have the option to receive pay over 10 months or 12 months as is desired. Benefits are a component of the 12 month contract and are therefore available throughout the calendar year. The employee portion benefit payment is doubled in June and September to cover the summer months.

    Can you imagine the organizational chaos that would ensue at every school if teachers were laid off every year and then teachers moved into different schools based on recall seniority? There would be little continuity and community maintained for students and parents. What a stupid idea, Kimberly.

  7. the organization chaos is exactly part of the problem in Coquitlam. every year laying off hundreds to reshuffle the deck and rehire most again. before September. 630 layoffs to cut 90 positions. then tons of people time to do the rehiring manage applications HR etc. How much does that cost in admin?

    from an effectiveness point of view The teachers move to a new school they have to integrate into that community which disrupts the start of the school year. Parents and kids don’t know who will be there from year to year. Granted everyone thinks teachers have it so great but, our own self serving whining aside about everyone who has something we don’t, jerking people around like that will do one thing. It will drive out the truly great people who can go to other jurisdictions or other career paths, or just grind down those who love the work and try to do well only to be shat upon year after year as the job is yanked from under them.

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