Thursday, December 6, 2012

There is a Lesson Here Somewhere

Job action begins. I'd like to say 'You Go Teachers' but seriously... no. I actually want to say 'Can we all get our heads out of our asses?' This gets old, I've had children in school for 14 years and have never once enjoyed a year that didn't feel like their education was being held over a barrel. Disputes over planning time, wages, benefits, duties, responsibilities, continued education requirements; there has always been something, some issue to be tiptoed around in an effort to accomplish things within the school community.

I have seen kids go without help. I've seen help get pulled out like a rug. I have also witnessed a great many teachers standing around with their hands tied behind their backs by collective bargaining bent on keeping them from performing to the very best of their compassion and knowledge.

What I have never seen is a situation where the kids come out the winners. They get less time, less attention, less sense of school as a community to flourish in. Parents either throw their hands in the air and claim the situation is beyond their control or they pull their hair out battling the red tape bureaucracy that keeps us from filling in the gaps of extra curricular events, sports, celebrations and enhancements to learning.I always find it comical that we can raise children unsupervised but that a group of dedicated parents can not, let's say, run a basketball program without school board representation at the helm.

I can't pretend to understand all of the sticking points on the current labour storm but I can tell you it feels like an old broken record and I wonder what the warring within the school system has taught my children in the last 14 years.

KJ informed me last night that she is not going to school on Monday. Technically she is going to school but to join her fellow students to sit in the hallway outside of their classrooms and send their own message.

So clearly her school years are teaching her something; If you don't like or agree with a situation speak-up, speak-out. I fear for the next lesson, the one parents know all too well, all that speaking-up and standing-up is destined for deaf ears. That of all the players in this game the kids are, beyond a doubt. the most mature, valuable and also the most devalued.

I stand behind my kids and their message, and while they are at school making their point, I will be trying to figure out a way to salvage those things that make school an experience not just an information delivery system.

Take the time to educate yourself today about Bill 115 and add your voice to the voice of our students. There are 3 sides to this issue.

There is some good layman's information here and a link to the actual mumble jumble

Check your local School Board website for updates on labour disputes. Local Waterloo Regional District School Board link