September 2, 2011 Dear Parents/Guardians: As you are likely aware, collective bargaining negotiations between the BC Teachers’ Federation and the Province are ongoing. While bargaining discussions continue, the BC Teachers’ Federation (BCTF) and its local Maple Ridge Teachers’ Association have served notice of a first phase of job action in connection with provincial contract negotiations. Public Education in BC is considered an essential service. Please be aware that all schools are open as usual and there will not be any pickets. The BC Labour Board has determined that Phase 1 of job action allows teachers in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows (and throughout BC) to withdraw from administrative meetings and related tasks such as: • • • •
Participating in certain meetings with principals/vice principals Preparing or distributing report cards (except Grade 12 marks required for graduation, post-secondary applications or scholarship purposes) Attending staff meetings Participating in meet the teacher activities that are outside of instructional time.
The Maple Ridge & Pitt Meadows School District is committed to ensuring that our schools are safe and students are adequately supervised. During this job action, principals, vice-principals, managers and other non-union staff will be assuming responsibility for recess supervision and after school bus pick up supervision. In these circumstances, it will be most helpful if you are able to pick-up your children as close to the end of the school day as possible. Supervision during lunch breaks for students is not affected as assigned Lunch Hour Supervisors will continue in their regular role. Our priority remains that of providing the best possible learning environment for children – to the best of our abilities both during the strike and after. The District will inform parents through school newsletters and websites as well as on the district website at www.sd42.ca. of any changes or developments in the job action status, particularly as those changes may relate to any direct impact on students. Individual school Principals will provide updates regarding school specific events and activities. For information regarding the key issues in the current contract dispute and details with respect to the current job action, you may wish to visit the BC Public School Employers Association (BCPSEA) website at www.bcpsea.bc.ca and/or Facebook at www.facebook.com/bcpsea where information will be posted as events unfold. Finally, it is important to emphasize that the Maple Ridge & Pitt Meadows School District acknowledges that our teachers are participating in legal job action. We appreciate that these situations can be difficult to manage but we are committed to making every reasonable effort to continue to support student learning.
Jan Unwin, Superintendent of Schools
Letter from Superintendent regardign job action