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Old 08-17-2001, 11:22 AM   #1
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I can't understand why Ontario teachers would object to taking courses to upgrade their skills and ensure that their knowledge is up-to-date and to see to it that they have the proper skills to provide children with a solid education.

take a look at this article i just found;

TORONTO (CP) - Another Ontario teacher's union believes its members should ignore the province's new mandatory teacher-testing plan, despite government warnings refusal to comply could result in dismissal.
Earl Manners, head of the Ontario Secondary School Teachers Federation, said Thursday the province's 50,000 high school teachers should do nothing but wait for the controversial initiative to be scrapped.

"I think the teachers should just ignore it, do what's best in the classroom and carry on," he said in an interview.

"This too shall pass, like every other bad initiative of this government."

In June, Phyllis Benedict, head of the Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario, said her members would refuse to take the courses mandated under the controversial new program.

Ontario's teachers will soon be required to complete 14 professional learning courses - including a final test - over five-year cycles in order to maintain their certificates. It is believed to be the first mandatory teacher-testing program in Canada.

About 40,000 teachers will be randomly selected to begin the program this fall.

Manners said the five-year cycle means teachers can just wait it out until the end of the current government mandate. The provincial Tories will have to call an election within the next three years.

On Monday, Education Minister Janet Ecker said elementary teachers who did not take part in the recertification process would lose their certificates, and face dismissal.

Asked again on Thursday what would happen if all Ontario teachers refused to recertify, Ecker said she refused to believe that would happen.

"I would be very surprised if teachers . . . are going to stop doing things they know work for them," she told reporters at an event designed to showcase the benefits of professional development for teachers.

She added that teachers already consider professional development essential to their jobs. Making it mandatory would ensure the training is regular and consistent, she said.

The Ontario English Catholic Teachers Federation, which represents 34,000 teachers, said Thursday it is adopting a wait-and-see attitude.

Pointing out that the details of the plan have not been made clear to teachers, union president Kathy McVean said she is advising members to do nothing.

"At this time we're telling (teachers) not to take any more action on it," she said.

"Until we know what the rules of this game are, we won't respond."

With only weeks before Ontario's students return to school, Ecker tried Thursday to counter the negative reaction by teachers to her recertification plan by posing before the cameras with teachers who voluntarily upgrade their skills.

Teachers in the quiet library of St. Francis Xavier clapped as several colleagues posed critical questions to the minister, one even challenging Ecker to visit her classroom to see what dealing with dozens of four- and five-year-olds is like.

Heather Bonner, 23, who will be teaching her first kindergarten class in the fall said later she was unsure whether she would follow her union's instructions not to recertify.

"I think it's easy for (unions) to say (ignore it)," she said. "They're not in our position, they won't be losing a job or anything like that."

Bonner supports the idea of professional development and spent $160 to participate in the voluntary summer session.

She is critical of any plan that would take time from her students.

"I want to focus on my teaching in the classroom and providing the best education that I can for my students. I don't want to be doing courses on the side."

The Ontario government has not yet made it clear whether the courses will be made available during the school year and who will pay for them.

if someone can explain to me why its such a bad thing other than they do'nt want to write a test, which is total b.s. becuase , well why would they give out as many tests and idiot assignments as they do????????(that arn't part of the goverments new standers)

AAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!MY EDUCATION DOWN THE DRAIN, last year I had 4/8 student teachers that DIDN't have a teaching degree!!! how many unqualified "teachers" will be showing me the path to life this year!!!!

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Old 08-17-2001, 01:13 PM   #2
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