I hear a lot of teacher bashing around my workplace and at sports fields at night. I was not aware that there are so many experts on the teaching profession, education system, and the collective bargaining process. These experts typically opine that teaching kids is easy, and on top of it the job comes with two months off in the summer. It is funny how these experts are often the ones that rail against the concept of year round schooling whenever it comes up because it would cut into their summer vacations.
It is difficult to get unbiased information regarding this perpetual conflict in B.C. For the most part, the media lacks the intellectual rigour to cover the matter beyond the usual storyline of parents scrambling to find child care while teachers are out.
The government lacks any credibility as it relishes and encourages conflict with the BCTF because it scores big political points and the endgame is solely about acquiring and retaining power. This is an especially slick and crass government that purports to care about education and fiscal prudence.
One cannot look to the BCTF for an unbiased perspective either. It is tightly controlled by a fringe of radicals that do not properly represent or reflect the interests of its membership. The union is more concerned with fighting various left wing causes around the world and with pushing back against the government with its own ideological fervor than it is in representing B.C. teachers. This is a union that continues to heap praise on Cuba because of its health and education systems, but it utterly ignores the fact that it is a communist dictatorship that represses its citizenry and denies it the most basic and fundamental human rights. During the Occupy Movement a few years ago the BCTF and its president provided financial and ideological support to protestors at the Vancouver Art Gallery. This was strange considering that the movement's worldview and goals are in direct conflict with the best interests of the union membership that the BCTF is so poorly qualified to represent.
To really comprehend what is going on inside of B.C. schools parents should talk with their kid's teacher or friends or family that may be in this profession. This dialogue should occur at another time than the annual parent teacher meeting or when lobbying for an additional two percent on their kid?s science project or exam.
Unlike the other players that approach this as a game, including most of the media, teachers do have the best interests of students at heart, and in mind. Teachers play a role as important as any in society, and they deserve to be fairly treated. I am not a teacher, but I support them.
Tim Opper, Langley