Not an option
As I read about schooling this year, giving parents the option of sending their children to school or opting for online learning, I can’t help thinking about rural residents.
We live 14 kilometres from Cornwall, just one kilometre from where Bell’s Fibe service is available. Online learning is not an option for us if we had school-aged children.
Our internet speeds are two megabit download, at best. It is expensive and unreliable.
Bell Canada won’t even install a home phone (although their lines run right across our lawn), which normally I wouldn’t want, but our cellphone coverage can be sketchy. I worry about emergencies!
We have spent more than $1,500 to try to boost our reception. We have contacted our MP, MPP, and mayor, only to be told the same song and dance, passing the buck. We are told it’s coming—when?
Let’s get action instead of talk. It is just not acceptable. Help!
Shooting the messenger
Premier Doug Ford says he likes teachers but not their “union bosses.”
He claims they are unreasonable in the demands they make. He says they “just want to fight.”
Obviously Ford does not understand democracy.
Teachers federations, like other unions, are democratic organizations. Their leaders are not bosses, they are servants. They are messengers. They have been chosen by teacher to represent them.
All policies and actions begin as an idea in the head of a classroom teacher. That teacher presents it to the federation members in their school. The members discuss the idea at a branch meeting and a vote is taken. If the motion is passed, the branch representative will carry it to the district council. This group is made up of the representatives of each branch.
A similar process occurs there and if the motion is passed at this body it is taken to the provincial body (again made up of representatives from each district council). It is discussed and voted on again at this level and appropriate actions are decided.
The union bosses are then given the task of implementing those actions.
One example is class size. While in all public indoor spaces two metres spacing is required, Ford has reduced this in-classroom to one metre. Students in class are together for a much longer period of time than customers in a grocery store.
Any teacher will tell you this is not safe for students or teachers.
I repeat: The union bosses are not bosses. They are servants and messengers.
What they are telling Ford is what the classroom teachers have told them to say.
Re: “A debacle lies ahead under our current prime minister,” Aug. 29, 2020.
Congratulations are in order to a dedicated citizen, Ron Bergeron, on writing a more-than-urgent column on the debacle that lies ahead under our present government.
The subjects discussed are extremely informative and so discouraging. I strongly encourage the Standard-Freeholder to continue publishing columns written by him, as his point of view is well-researched, very important and always apropos!