Where are the KDSS teams?

Section: 
Editorial

The Independent office received an e-mail Friday saying that the CWOSSA hockey playdowns would be held Monday and Tuesday of this week in Walkerton. Two boys’ high school teams will qualify for OFSSA, since KDSS won last year.

 

And where is KDSS? As the OFSSA winner last year, KDSS was to host CWOSSA and have a berth in OFSSA.

 

Well, the Ontario Secondary School Teacher’s Federation (OSSTF), the public high school teachers’ union, has been protesting its imposed contract and declared that teachers were not to participate in extra-curricular activities.

 

The separate school teachers (Ontario English Catholic Teachers’ Association) settled their contract with the province and have been allowed to coach and participate in other extra-curricular events.

 

A couple of weeks ago the OSSTF said it was ending its political protest and teachers could resume coaching and running after school clubs.

 

That’s a little late for the hockey players and all the other students who play sports at KDSS.

 

The teachers don’t like Bill 115, but why hold students up for ransom?

 

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Chances are that the ploy of the OSSTF will come back to bite teachers in the butt.

 

Some friends in London were telling me that graduating grade 8 students are choosing their high schools now and many are switching to the separate school system when they enter high school in the fall so that they will be able to participate in sports. There was a report out of Windsor saying the same thing.

 

That would eliminate the jobs of some OSSTF members.

 

That’s maybe why the OSSTF now says teachers can resume coaching.

 

Meanwhile, the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario continues to demand that public school elementary teachers do the minimum – no extra-curricular activities, no meeting with parents.

 

Retired teachers tell me that report cards and meeting with parents were always considered part of the job.

 

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The public elementary and high school teachers should be careful what they wish for. Back in 1993, Ontario was in tough financial shape, and the NDP government of the day imposed “Rae Days” on the civil service including teachers. The civil service didn’t like the unpaid “Rae Days” and the unions turned against the NDP. That led to the election of Mike Harris and PCs; that Harris government had no sympathy for unions.

 

And who is waiting in the wings and leading in the polls today? None other than the PCs. Tory leader Tim Hudak said last week a PC government would not cosy up to teachers and their union bosses, but rather put them in their place.

 

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Hudak wants an election, and maybe NDP leader Andrea Horvath does too. She says she’ll vote against the minority government if new Premier Kathleen Wynne doesn’t lower automobile insurance rates.

 

Queen’s Park appears to be a mess. The new premier sounds like she is an intelligent lady but outgoing premier Dalton McGuinty left her a mess. I doubt if she’ll win any seats in ridings with wind farms.

 

Hudak leads the polls but I would be surprised if he’ll have much luck in Toronto with his far right views. The NDP hasn’t caught anyone’s imagination.

 

If there is a provincial election, we’ll likely get another minority.

 

So be it. No party deserves a majority.

 

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Still on education, a Grade 2 teacher, I won’t say where, asked all her students to bring a $5 to $10 present to class for a secret valentine on Feb. 14.

 

My grand nephew and a girl in the class did not receive a gift; everyone else did.

 

Two parents didn’t buy gifts and so two children were centred out. Common sense says, if you’re going to have gifts for everyone, you better have enough on hand so that every child gets one. The two children will likely remember the Feb. 14 event for the rest of their days.

 

Obviously, it takes more than teacher education to provide someone with common sense.

 

Letters and meetings ensued so a similar event doesn’t happen in the future at the school, but the damage was done.