I hope all ETFO Waterloo members enjoyed some down time this summer and have had a great first day as we welcome the 2018-19 school year!
It has been an eventful summer for education, as you are aware, and today ETFO announced it has filed an injunction against the government to address the repeal of the 2015 Health & Physical Ed curriculum as well as the anonymous reporting line or “snitch line”.
The actions of the Ford government with respect to education have so far been irresponsible, but ETFO is committed, both locally and provincially, to supporting members in using their professional judgement to ensure that the Ontario Human Rights Code is upheld and all staff & students & their families are able to feel welcome, represented, and respected at school. The WRDSB is one of over 30 school boards that has publicly expressed support for the 2015 curriculum, with trustees formally asking the Ministry to leave it in place. Existing WRDSB policies and procedures also support all of the things that are absent from the old or “revised” curriculum. Members should not fear to teach health as they always have for those reasons. Watch for continued information coming on this as things progress.
Announcements about consultations in other areas, including math, have also been made. ETFO will continue to advocate for members and for the government to respect the expertise that exists in all of the stakeholders' groups.
Locally we have been and continue to meet with MPPs to ensure that they understand the reality of our education system and the fact that adequate funding continues to be the issue most in need of attention.
It’s sure to be an interesting year as we head towards the expiration of our current contract at the end of August 2019. Here’s hoping it’s memorable mores for the good things and the right reasons. Whatever may come, we will have the strength and support of each other to get us through.