Merry Christmas to All
Congratulations on making it to another COVID Christmas. You are superstars. The ability to manage your responsibilities in the classroom and at home is remarkable. What you have accomplished is phenomenal! Heading into the Christmas break, we wanted to take the opportunity to wish each of you and your families a peace-filled and joyous holiday. You have more than earned each minute spent away from the rigors of work.
It cannot be overstated the importance of using this time to shutdown, rest, and rejuvenate. Vacations are known to improve your quality of sleep. As the attached McMaster link states, “Dedicating time for the purpose of rest, relaxation and to recharge is of critical importance; … so dedicating time away to unplug can help us to reset.” Our office has communicated to the Board that they should have no expectation that teachers will be doing any work over the coming two weeks. Additionally, we have requested two transition days to allow for a pivot to remote learning should an announcement to that effect be made during the holiday. Please take all of this time ahead for yourselves and your family.
Our office has communicated to the Board that they should have no expectation that teachers will be doing any work over the coming two weeks. Additionally, we have requested two transition days to allow for a pivot to remote learning should an announcement to that effect be made during the holiday. Please take all of this time ahead for yourselves.
Throughout the break, the OECTA Hamilton-Wentworth office will remain closed. If an emergency presents, please contact the provincial office at 1-800-268-7230.
Board Makes $8.4 Million More Than Budgeted Last Year
You read that correctly! The Board had budgeted a deficit of $718,000 for the 2020/21 school year and wound up with an extra $7,655,000 in the bank instead. We were all asked to make sacrifices for the students, their families and our communities. Apparently all of us were to contribute to the cause. Yet the Board had $8.4 million more than they planned at the end of the year.
Teacher-Librarians were yanked from the Learning Commons at the last minute and forced back into classrooms. Arts Integrated Teachers were no longer teaching arts and were given classroom assignments too. All teachers we provided inadequate technology to provide on-line education. We were asked to use inferior PPE. Our timetables were contorted to allow for all the extra safety precautions. Classroom teachers were asked to teach, asses and report on three more subjects. Primary virtual classroom teachers were asked to do this for six subjects. All of you missed so much planning time. And the Board was sitting on $8.4 million.
What Would $8.4 Million Pay For?
COVID in Your Workplace
False Bill of Goods
Following a tumultuous 2020-2021 school year, Ford and Lecce spent the summer and fall fervently selling Ontarians on robust layers of protection. Evidence for the effectiveness of their plan is now riding in upon a tsunami of COVID cases in our schools. Elementary schools, in particular, are a stand out among all other outbreak settings, with 324 active outbreaks as of December 16, more than at any other time throughout the pandemic. Rather than attend to the issue, like any snake oil salesmen worth their salt, Ford and Lecce continue their campaign of gas lighting through diversion and distraction. In the midst of an Omicron Crisis, Ford and Lecce are laser-focused on self-promotion and drawing attention away from the calamity of COVID in our schools. Curiously, the Minister of Education met with senior citizens as opposed to meeting with students in schools. Meanwhile, Ford took time from his busy schedule to make an announcement about the announcement he was about to make. Robust layers of promotion, perhaps. A false bill of goods, undoubtedly. Clearly, their priorities do not align with keeping students and education workers safe.