I have updates on several topics…
Some of these will not affect all members, but I strongly encourage all members to read this information carefully…
1. Update on the hiring process…
I have been swamped with emails and phone calls. My apologies to those I have been unable to answer personally. If there were questions of a general nature I have sent them off to HR and include the responses here…
- Candidates may call the schools to inquire more specifically about a posting if they feel the posting is not clear. For instance, if it is less than a full time position the portion of the day/week may influence a candidate’s decision about applying to a position.
- The Board will not be looking to accommodate requests for two .5 positions being combined to make a 1.0 position.
- Candidates will receive a phone call from Principals about their placement (as opposed to emails, notices through Waterworks, etc.). Contract calls will be made first – hopefully on the 27th. LTOs will be contacted, hopefully, on June 28
- Required AQs are as follows: Spec Ed-1 for SERT and Spec Ed jobs., FSL-1 or an for French jobs, ESL-1 for ESL jobs, Phys. Ed., Art, Music, Science at the grade 7/8 level will require the additional qualification or an equivalent University degree. If a candidate has a French Teachable and the appropriate Pr or Jr division they may apply to immersion or core.
- Cover letters are not required and will not be considered.
I have asked a couple of other questions of the HR department and have not received answers to this point. If I get more information on Monday, I will inform members.
2. Stay Positive
I understand that members are very weary. I understand the ‘suspicion’ and angst and uneasiness that this entire hiring process has caused for members who have been asked to endure a very challenging process in the past few months. This has been a trying time. I do want to remind members to be quite mindful, however, of comments that may be overheard in various venues that can be misunderstood or be construed to be more negative than may be the intent, or that members may wish to be seen as the intent. So much of an OTs reputation and their chances to be asked to return to a school, or to accept a longer term position in a school, can hinge on a ‘first impression’ or a feeling that an administrator, parent, or other educational worker in a school gets, in any number of ways, and in various places – staff rooms, classrooms, even the mall or at social gatherings, sporting events and, maybe, ‘Tupperware-type’ parties!
We need to be discreet. It serves no one to be seen to be critical of the Board about a system over which the Board has little or no control. This whole Reg’n 274 has been imposed upon everyone. It is not ‘the Board’s fault’, (nor the fault of this office!) that this has unfolded in the manner it has.
There have been so many unanswered questions and so many variations in interpretation across the province. There appears to be little consistency on any level. At this point, the process that our Board is implementing seems ‘more fair’ than many, and offers a ‘quick resolution’ for many members, at least. As it unfolds, we will count on members to let us – the Union, and the HR department – know how it has impacted them.
I also know that members have had to endure a lot of negative comments from some contract teachers, some administrators, some educational workers, and some other Occasional Teachers in recent days as well. I feel badly about that. Everyone is simply worn out this year and often that translates, as indicated above, into comments that might not have been made had an individual thought about where they were speaking, and who their audience was… We all need some ‘summer’….
3. 10 Occurences
***Important information for all members who have been on (maternity or other) leave this year or otherwise unable to complete the 10 occurrences of Occasional Teaching as required in order to remain on the OT roster, under article 8.06 of our Collective Agreement. As a result of discussions, the Board has agreed to waive the requirement for members to have completed the 10 occurrences of Occasional Teaching this year on a ‘without prejudice’ basis. Therefore, everyone who has been on our roster this school year (2012-2013) will be on our roster for the next school year (2013-2014). No members will be receiving letters of termination from our roster by June 30, 2013. This issue will be discussed and resolved during our Local negotiations’ discussions. If you do not intend to work as an Occasional Teacher in Waterloo Region next year, because you have attained a contract elsewhere, or are retiring, etc. please let us, and the Board, know, so that we can have a more accurate membership list.
Please remember to vote on the issue of the provincial MOU. I hope many of you listened to the town hall phone call on Wednesday evening. There is a lot of information that may be helpful in making your decision about how to vote on the www.controlyourfuture.ca site or through the provincial webpage at www.etfo.ca . Voting closes on Sunday, June 23 at 6:00 p.m.
5. The last day of school
If you are in an LTO position and expect to be paid for June 28th, you need to be at your school for the portion of the day that represents your assignment – all day if you are in a 1.0 assignment, half a day if you’re in a .5 assignment etc. I would be certain that I was ‘seen’ during those hours as well, and that I wished others a cheery ‘Have a good summer!’ before I left at the end of the day! I understand that some have been told they don’t need to attend the staff meeting at their school, but I would recommend that they attend the school, and if their room/duties are completed, that they volunteer to assist the office assistant or the library clerk, or a colleague, etc. If you have been requested to attend a staff meeting at a school at which you have been placed for September, I would suggest you clarify with the principals where you are to be for the afternoon of June 28th. Again, make sure you are fulfilling you commitment as an LTO.
6. Personal Info
Please do not request personal information from other members. Asking for personal information through Waterworks, email or through phone calls can be seen to be intrusive, invasive, and very inappropriate by many. We must respect others’ privacy.
These are interesting times, indeed…