As we embark upon the 2015-2016 season and ready our minds and spirits for another year of teaching and learning I’d like to bring a few things to your attention.
2015-16 marks the end of our current collective agreement with the employer. This four-year agreement was legislated upon teachers and came with three years of 0% salary increase. This fourth year will see a 2% increase in salaries and a 1% ‘one time lump sum payment’ for all teachers on contract on November 15th, 2015 to be paid by the end of December 2015.
2015-16 will mark the beginning of new rounds of negotiations for an upcoming collective agreement. Negotiations will likely begin in early 2016 and it is imperative that you support your Economic Policy Committee (EPC) leading up to, and during, negotiations. You can support your EPC by comprehensively filling out surveys, sharing your perspectives and priorities for teachers in your school division and attending any/all Bargaining Unit General Meetings (BUGMs). Signals from the Provincial ATA and the NDP government point to the high probability that this round of bargaining will not be conducted at the provincially, but rather at the local level, which speaks again to the importance of ensuring you are engaged and informed about the process.
The ‘new’ calendar presents some serious impediments to the vibrancy and resiliency of our Local generally, but particularly in the realm of professional development. With our ATA PD Day being scheduled as an ‘island’ on November 12th this year it is likely that many of us plan to use a personal day in order to achieve an uninterrupted November break. While this would most definitely is your prerogative, please understand the implications of your individual decision may have significant repercussions for the Local, collectively.
This will undoubtedly be a year of extreme challenges, but I do believe that on the horizon are opportunities that teachers in this province have long desired and deserved. Should we choose to actively engage in the political, social and economic issues that affect public education in this province in a manner that exemplifies our professional acumen, then hand in hand, teachers of this local, and across the province, will secure a future that is bright and prosperous for all.
Yours in Education,
Park Plains Info
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