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The worst experience I recall from high school would be the grade 12 academic advising. I remember being very excited because I had managed to earn an 85 per cent average after three difficult years. As I sat down with my guidance counsellor, he told me that trade school would be suitable for my perceived skills.
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You'll understand like never before.
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Our society and our universities need a renewed ethic for how we are to navigate deep social divisions with one another, including how we advocate for the protection of rights, respond to the violation of rights and how we contest the terrains of rights and our responsibilities to one another in a pluralistic society.
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Later on this week or month, you will perhaps receive and then open an envelope containing your child's tri-annual report card, an account informing you of their academic progress in school so far this year. But you might find that not everything your child has learned will be part of that running commentary.
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It's disingenuous for the B.C. Liberal government to couch its new curriculum within a framework of flexibility while simultaneously removing billions from the education budget thereby causing ever more restrictions on what is possible in classrooms. It's especially galling that the minister does not acknowledge that teachers have been transforming education for decades, continuously responding to "the demands of a changing world" without much support for this Herculean task from the ministry.
In the past I've explained the psychological, sociological, cultural, political and evolutionary basis for human behaviour but, given recent events, I no longer believe that that's enough. My students, in the face of revent world events, want to know one thing in particular: they want to know why it's so hard for people to get along with other people.
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Less than a year before the provincial elections, education has been identified as a key election issue -- and just like that, Christy Clark begins a slew of million-dollar announcements, many aimed at ridings she knows the Liberals will struggle to get elected in.
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The B.C. Liberals have been cutting funding and supports for public schools. This year alone the government asked school board to find $25 million in "administrative cuts," last year it was $29 million. So this one-time funding announcement is not what I consider to be an addition to funding, but rather a reduction in this year's cuts.
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John Horgan didn't hold back while questioning Premier Christy Clark on a rather puzzling $150k donation, that ended up indirectly benefitting her brother. A donation that appears to have no paper trail, policy, or even a record that the request for the donation was ever made.
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Here in B.C. our students (if they even qualify) will get $1,200. This might get you one year of textbooks, hardly a progressive move by any means. But our government is using this grant to try and gain support, and they are spending public tax money to push these ads on TV, radio, Internet, newspapers and other media.
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The BC Liberal government cites declining enrollment for both schools closures and constant cuts to overall funding. They blame school boards for mismanaging their money, constantly insisting they just need to cut the low hanging fruit. They blame teachers for asking for too much with their salaries and class size demands, despite the fact that we have some of the lowest paid teachers and highest class sizes in Canada.
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Dear Mike Bernier: If you truly believe there are no funding issues in our public schools, then I assume you think it is the job of parents and PACs to raise upwards of $30,000 a year to supply basic necessities for their children's school. Do you think that giving students in B.C. $1,000 less than the national average will offer them the best opportunities in their education?
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The people of B.C. are waking up, big time. I'm sure this scares the hell out of Clark, who might finally be coming to the realization that every scandal, misstep or moronic statement can't be fixed with a smiling photo op in a hard hat.
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The Canadian propensity for self-aggrandizement is in form these days. It started with the massive coverage of the arrival of Syrian refugees at Pearson International Airport in December. While many were drowning in self-congratulations, all I could think about was a scene from Woody Allen's 1973 film, Sleeper.
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Access to e-learning solutions is less pressing today than ever. More schools, teachers, and students have access to the internet than ever before. More than ever, there is choice in the market. Every product segment of education technology is exploding with well-funded competition, and many of them offer free solutions for teachers. So why are we still funding outdated one-size-fits-all models when it comes to tech in classrooms?
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Public education is a cartel, and cartels can be very hard to disrupt. But disruption is already taking place in the post-secondary sector -- see UoPeople, the world's first non-profit, near tuition-free, accredited online university. When it comes to the disruption of elementary and secondary education, the challenge is greater.
I am coming to realize more and more all the time that the overall public perception of teachers on the outside is at times negative. That perception is characterized by whininess, over-pay, indulgence, laziness, self-centeredness and servility. This image will probably remain until change occurs, both within and without education. Teachers are at times unaware of the image we occasionally present to the public. Perhaps it is time that we as teachers begin to re-invent this negative image
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I love to listen to all kinds of music. Previously I wrote a blog on "The Top Ten Reasons Why The Symphony Is Cool." Recently, I was fortunate enough to speak with Gail Suderman, Artistic Director, G...
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B.C.'s Charter for Public Education is a public owned document, which stands as a testament to everything we as a community want and expect from our public school system. It is a document long forgotten somewhere between the never ending war against our public schools, funding cuts and dragged out court cases.
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I'm sorry that you are forced to sit for 6 hours each school-day despite research that reveals the detrimental cognitive and health effects of excessive sitting. I wish you had not had your curiosity crushed by classroom conformity.
Dear Teacher: You called after me today. I was frustrated. Angry. Tired and lonely. And I didn't want to hear someone tell me for the bazillionth time all that I had done wrong. Tell me how I had been a bully. A bad boy. The truth is: I know. I know I am a bully. I have a hard time making friends because I'm different. But you took the time.
VANCOUVER - A litany of consequences arise if the British Columbia government is allowed to get away with rubbing out hundreds of clauses from the teachers' union's collective agreement, warns a lawye...
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If only students were made of concrete and steel that could be moulded into things like roads, bridges, pipelines or sports arenas for Olympic events. Things that would be seen to be worth it, a good investment of billions of dollars of taxpayer money.
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You'll need to reinvent your knowledge base often as you go through life. And as graduates from a liberal arts and sciences university, you know that it's not just your knowledge that's important. It's your ability to think, collaborate, solve problems, synthesize and to learn and learn again, again and again.
Last week, the Alberta government announced school completion rates are on the rise province-wide. It's great news - and now we have an opportunity to build on this success.
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It's almost recess and I am urging the children to put away their snacks so as to ready for the recess bell. The students start slowly stowing their lunch boxes inside their backpacks and heading for...
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This past week, the much lauded TV show Cosmos made its return to the small screen. Back in 1980, I was a 13-year-old immigrant kid, youngest in a busy, working class household of seven people, and attending a Toronto inner city middle school that was not exactly a model of academic excellence. Enter into that world Carl Sagan.
Most low-income parents can't buy expensive homes or afford private schools or tutors or access specialized public schools or home-school. Their children, for the most part, are stuck with their neighbourhood school. If that school doesn't meet their children's needs at some point, those needs just go unmet.
Somewhere along the way, we've adopted some goofy misguided idea that children's psyches are inherently, staggeringly fragile, prone to devastating and irreversible damage from any number of relatively benign phenomena -- like honour rolls, sporting activities where only the winning team gets a trophy, or track and field days with actual competition (oh, the horror!).
Many different organizations and health experts have purposed various solutions to solve the western world's obesity epidemic. But the underlying problem to the obesity epidemic is the current population's lack of connectivity to the soil, the environment and the food supply. If we can reconnect our current population with the food supply and the community, we will create a healthier and brighter future for generations to come.
Ontarian parents who favour one unified school system would be wise to take a look at the education scene in B.C., where some say the teachers' union is more powerful than God. If we didn't have three teachers' unions in Ontario, it is likely that no students would be enjoying extra-curricular activities today.
Ontario high school students are being disproportionately affected by the conflict between the Ontario Secondary School Teachers' Federation (OSSTF) and the provincial government. What is most worrying about the conflict between the Ontario teacher's union and the government is the way in which students are being used as pawns by the OSSTF to advance and promote a political message. Students' anger over the loss of extracurricular activities should not be directed towards the government.