Teachers offer more than just curriculum

Our children’s experiences are going to be a lot more limiting with the passage of Bill 22

Re: Maybe it’s time for a new take on education (Letters, March 14)

A) It’s awesome that the writer is aware and acknowledges the astonishing array of amazing out-of-school activities teachers offer to aspiring students yet she is not appreciative; she is angry at the teachers because her daughter is apathetic about swimming due to a cancelled swim meet.

Our children’s experiences are going to be a lot more limiting with the passage of Bill 22.  Here is a golden opportunity to teach children about human rights, respecting and supporting volunteers or voting for a judicious government, for example.

B) It’s baffling that the author is bitter. Teachers are being brazenly bullied with belittling Liberal ads and a bizarre Bill 22. (This strike is about the declining quality of education in B.C.) Striking teachers being blunt rather than benevolent will benefit our students.

C) The writer asks to change the discussion to find a new way to keep our kids in the classroom. Teachers are in the classroom, working with students, doing what they are contracted to do.  Many teachers also thrive on extracurricular activities. It is a highlight to coach, co-ordinate, collaborate, counsel, conduct or choreograph.

It is crucial to communicate that even though it’s customary for schools to have countless extracurricular activities, (graduation dances, ski trips, cross country meets, track meets, etc.) they are run by volunteer teachers. These activities occur in addition to planning, preparing and teaching. Teachers typically put in a 50-60 hour work week. The volunteer activities are scheduled between staff meetings, committee meetings, parent-teacher meetings, behind the scenes activities such as ordering, cataloguing, maintaining learning resources and supplies (to name a few).

In closing, parents, you are welcome to be A) active, not only to B) bake, buy and often C) co-ordinate the school fundraisers as you always do thanks to budget cuts, but to also C) contribute in other ways and sponsor a school club or coach.

Karen Erdem