Teachers’ strike causing difficulties: Superintendent

  • Nov. 30, 2011 1:00 p.m.

The ongoing teachers’ strike is making it difficult for administrators in the school district to get things done, superintendent Angus Wilson told trustees at their Nov. 22 meeting in Port Clements. As an example, Mr. Wilson said, he has been trying to work with the principal of aboriginal education, Joanne Yovanovich, to develop materials for Haida 11. But their schedules have been so busy with covering recess supervision at elementary schools throughout the district that they haven’t been able to find the time to sit down together. School principals have been unable to implement new programs since the beginning of September because they haven’t been able to hold staff meetings, Mr. Wilson said. As part of the job action, teachers are refusing to meet with administrators, supervise students at recess, and fill out report cards, among other duties. The School Act requires school principals to issue report cards, Mr. Wilson said, which is why parents have received report cards this month that are mostly blank. While parents are free to contact their children’s teachers if they want to know how they are doing, the lack of report card grades has been a disappointment to some of the more “marks-driven” students, Mr. Wilson said. It also means there will be no honour rolls in the high schools this term. With no end to the job action in sight, trustee Christine Martynuik asked Mr. Wilson if the district is considering cancelling recess, as some other districts have. Mr. Wilson said so far, the administrators are okay with covering the break, and don’t want to see it cancelled. Mr. Wilson will be preparing a report for the December board meeting listing the extra costs associated with the job action so far, such as mileage for administrators to cover recess in the various schools, and productivity losses.

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