In education news today, the BC Teachers’ Federation named its new President.
It was hardly the most riveting election, with former first vice-president Glen Hansman running unopposed.
Barely minutes after the union acclaimed its new leader, Hansman was already fielding questions on the federation’s upcoming appeal in the Supreme Court.
That appeal is to restore contract language on class size and composition, and it goes back 14 years when teachers had their right to bargain on those issues taken away by the government.
Hansman says it continues to be a major sticking point for teachers.
“Our members, we were talking quite a bit about that, at this AGM in terms of work and learning conditions still not being where they should be, service levels for kids not being what they ought to be and lot of that’s driven by the court case that we’re still waiting the outcome for.”
Hansman says this year’s provincial budget may have increased the dollar amount for operating costs, but it hasn’t kept up with costs of pay increases and Hydro.
“The actual cost of providing the needs of kids in schools, and we’re nowhere near funded to how schools in Alberta, Ontario, Manitoba or Saskatchewan or most other provinces are funded.”
Hansman also paid tribute to outgoing President Jim Iker
“While he’s been the face of the Federation it’s also a team-like environment, he’s probably one of the most patient, calm, zen like individuals you will ever meet.”
Hansman officially takes over June 30th.