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Volume 22 Number 4 Spring 2011

AGM NOTES

Pat Bowslaught, AGM Chair, Elections Chair While we are hoping for a not too wet spring, the Annual General Meeting for The Retired Teachers' Association of Manitoba (RTAM) is fast approaching. It will take place in Steinbach on May 10 and 11, 2011. The purpose of this note is to update you on the following: • The registration form for the AGM is on page 23. • Please note that hotel/motel reservations should be made asap. • The Days Inn at phone 320-9200 has had 25 rooms reserved for RTAM AGM participants. • It has just been suggested that there are two other hotels in Steinbach which are available. These are "Sleep Suite Motel" at 326-1324 and "Frantz Motor Inn" at 326-9831. • This KIT contains nomination forms with which individuals can be nominated to serve on the RTAM Board. Please submit nomination before April 7, 2011, for inclusion into the AGM nominations booklet. (Late nominations may be made from the floor of AGM.) • There are several current board members who have given notice that they will not be returning to the Board for the next term so we do need some nominations. • Please note that there are up to twenty positions on the Board and we would love to have nominations for all positions including the four Officer positions plus the members at large. We remind you that this is your organization that works on behalf of, and for the betterment of, our almost 11 000 members. This is an exciting opportunity for you. We usually have one Board Meeting per month with the exceptions of July, August and December. Board members also volunteer to serve on at least one of our committees.

RTAM TRAVEL SEMINAR MAY 4, 2011 McMaster House Manitoba Teachers' Society 191 Harcourt St. (Portage And Harcourt) 9:30 a.m. to 12 noon See page 7

Wellness Seminar STAY IN THE GAME Wednesday, April 20, 2011 9:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. See page 9

2011 Meeting of Chapter Presidents May 10, 2011 Brass Lantern, Steinbach REMEMBER TO MARK YOUR CALENDAR YE OLDE RUSTY CLASSIC Tuesday, September 6, 2011. Neepawa Golf & Country Club, Neepawa, MB • Registration: 11:00 a.m. Fee: $85.00 per person (includes a cart) • Shotgun Start: At noon

2011 Annual General Meeting

to be held at the Brass Lantern, Steinbach, MB, May 10 and 11, 2011 Please make your own hotel reservations by April 30, 2011 (reference RTAM AGM) See page 21 for registration form.

RTAM Board Nomination Form: Deadline April 7, 2011

see page 20


Board of Directors 2010-2011 Richard R. Benoit, President 200 Point West Drive Winnipeg, MB R3T 5H7 261-9839 lbenoit@mts.net

Rita Warrian, Secretary 41 Stradbrooke Place Dauphin, MB R7N 0M8 638-6119 mwarrian@mymts.net

Pat Bowslaugh, Past President 22 Wellington Drive Brandon , MB R7B 2Y9 728-4924 bowsp@wcgwave.ca

Jag Malik, Treasurer P.O. Box 303 Gilbert Plains, MB R0L 0X0 548-2642 jmlik@mts.net

Dr. Mary Pankiw, Vice President 42 Matlock Crescent Winnipeg, MB R3R 3H7 831-6984

Board Members Rosalie Bornn Bylaws & Policy RR 4 Comp 47 Dauphin , MB R7N 2T7 638-6731 rbornn@mts.net

Peggy Prendergast Wellness 1 Bittersweet Bay Winnipeg, MB R2J 2E5 257-1962 ppeggy@mts.net

Guy Hansen 1705-11 Evergreen Place Winnipeg, MB R3L 2T9 283-4265 fayeghansen@hotmail.com

Maureen Recksiedler Travel P.O. Box 744 Stonewall, MB R0C 2Z0 grecks@xplornet.ca

Wayne Hughes Political Action 82 Whiteshell Avenue Winnipeg, MB R2C 2R9 222-4011 lwhughes@mts.net

Doreen Sage Box 252 Neepawa , MB R0J 1H0 476-5772 dsage@mts.net

Note: EDITOR OF KIT DOREEN SAGE

Box 252 Neepawa, MB R0J 1H0 Phone: (204) 476-5772 Email: dsage@mts.net

PRIVACY OFFICER RICHARD BENOIT

2 00 Point West Drive Winnipeg, MB R3T 5H7 Phone: (204) 261-9839 Email: lbenoit@mts.net

Free Public Service Announcements Not-for-profit organizations who wish to place public service announcements, volunteer opportunities with service groups, school or teacher reunions are encouraged to do so. Submissions are printed free of charge.

Thanks For Your Contributions We would like to thank all those who contributed material for KIT. When sending in files please use Word, black ink only and no formatting. Please keep writing. Photos: 1500 pixels or professionally developed.

Ron Kalinchuk Communications Box 202, Virden, MB R0M 2C0 748-1463 kayaker@rfnow.com

Ray Sitter Membership & Chapter Formation 157 Lynx Crescent Brandon , MB R7B 3R6 725-1745 rsitter@mts.net

Inside this issue

Vel McAdam Educational Advocacy Box 775, The Pas, MB R9A 1K8 623-3707 kelseybl@mts.net

John Sushelnitsky 818 Crescent Rd W., Portage la Prairie, MB R1N 0Z1 857-3014 jmsush@shaw.ca

Barbara McDole 111 Vista Avenue Winnipeg, MB R2M4Y5 1-204-254-8965 barbaramcdole@hotmail.com

William Taylor B-423 Braecrest Drive Brandon , MB R7C 1B4 725-1199 taylor.william6@gmail.com

» President's Report » MTS President's Report » ACER/CART » Travel Seminar » Committee Reports » Wellness Seminar Registration » RTAM policy changes » Chapter Reports » Distinguished Service Award » Nominations Form » RTAM Registration

Anne Monk Pensions 710 Campbell Street Winnipeg, MB R3N 1C3 586-7201 ammonk@mts.net

2 • KIT Spring 2011

3 4 5,6 7 7,8 9 10,11 12 19 22 23


PRESIDENT'S REPORT Richard Benoit

them, be it comical or very serious. They still remember you fondly, their teacher, and often thank you for having made such an important contribution to their life.

As the month of February draws to a close, we can allow ourselves to dream of spring and summer, seasons during which we can experience all of nature’s beauty and witness the growth process, which yields delicious produce and beautiful f lowers. As we commune with nature, we can also reminisce about our years as teachers and administrators where we helped many young people grow and mature. We remember those twinkling eyes and broad smiles as our students learned, discovered and solved many challenges that we, as teachers presented to them. Some of my fondest memories in life date back to my years in the public school system. I still am amazed at how my grade twelve teacher, a young nun, could teach a poem and really have every student appreciate its literary beauty and message. The same teacher for all grade twelve subjects would then lead us to Brink’s textbook “A First Year of College Mathematics,” where solving Math problems was a challenge, but fun. Being extremely versatile, this same person, who was also principal of this four room high school, jumped from subject to subject forever mastering each and always making us thirst for more knowledge, learn more skills, develop our minds to enjoy and learn more. And, so it was with all my teachers, from grades one to twelve. I was fortunate to have always been entrusted to people who loved their students, vicariously shared their learning adventures and forever challenged them to surpass themselves, to prepare for the future and to become contributing members of our society. While not all students have experienced a similar positive experience, the great majority has and is very thankful for it. We all meet former students who immediately inquire about whether we remember them in grade two or in high school chemistry. If time permits, they go on and reminisce about a certain incident very important to

Readers must be wondering by now what this message is all about. The answer is simple and factual. We must shed our humility and really stop to grasp the impact that we had on so many lives and on the role we played in the transformation of young people and society in general, producing well rounded citizens and parents. These facts we must not let society forget. We have all contributed to creating better citizens of a prosperous nation. Sometimes, we wonder about the worth of all this energy, this effort and the fortitude to carry on. Sometimes we are faced with many odds and obstacles on our pathway. We were determined to be true professionals and generally speaking we were, rising above the call of duty. As we live our retirement years, we cannot and must not stop to claim what is rightfully ours in society. Pension-wise, retired teachers should be treated with dignity and equity as all seniors should. Moreover, we deserve justice and fairness as we compare our pension with retired civil servants who receive a better cost of living allowance (COLA) than we do. Such is the case when comparing with retired teachers in other provinces. We applaud their treatment and believe they earned it. So then, why treat Manitoba retired teachers differently? Why are those who are able to help us, forgetting us? This question is of utmost importance, a principle that must be addressed. On October 4, 2011, we will be electing MLAs who will be responsible for government direction until 2015. It behooves us to make certain that all future MLAs understand the present unjust situation and commit to long term funding regarding a proper COLA. Our Political Action Committee is presently training RTAM members throughout our province to meet with MLAs and then with all political candidates to inform them of our plight, our unequal treatment in comparison to other similar groups. This is not an invitation to vote for a certain political party. This is responding to the challenge of providing facts to all candidates and the public at large so that they may understand that some of

our members really are experiencing great difficulties in making ends meet and how all of us are faced with this unequal treatment. Other political action is also planned and we will share these with our membership in KIT, on our website, by e-mail or through other media. The election also provides us with the opportunity of advancing the plight of seniors in general. Our numbers are growing and yes, we possibly contribute to the province’s heavy financial burdens in health care, but ways must be found to make wellness for senior citizens a priority or the costs will be greater yet. Your Board is continuing its work in all areas and our standing committees are certainly not idle. Membership in any group is of crucial importance. Numbers draw more attention and provide still more credibility to a group. A Power Point Presentation describing the goals, purposes, benefits and challenges of our organization has been approved by the Board and also, brochures should be available shortly. Please consult our website weekly so that you may be informed as to the date of the availability of the above. Please join us in recruiting new members by informing retirees about us and our benefits and challenges. Hopefully, all 2011 retirees will join our ranks and see us easily surpassing the 8,000 member mark. Our 2011 AGM will be held in Steinbach on May 10 and 11. Please come and enjoy the Steinbach hospitality and help choose the priorities for the coming year. Moreover, we are hoping that many of you will seriously consider letting your name stand for election. This is a great opportunity to learn and serve. In conclusion, I wish all of you a pleasant and relaxing summer. May we all walk with pride, cognizant of our many contributions. May we walk with heads held high for we have prepared many productive citizens! May we remember that at no time are we ever a burden on society for we have helped build it and we are now passing the torch to the next generation empowering each member to leave his/her mark on society as we have during 20, 30, 40, and even 45 years of service! Now we cannot rest for there are still so many experiences to enjoy and adventures to undertake. Spring 2011 KIT • 3


As Manitoba’s population grows through immigration, there are more students for whom English is not their first language who are included in today’s regular classroom. For students from war-affected nations, this may be the first time they have ever been in a school. So in addition to coping with language issues, teachers have cultural differences to contend with. The life that our students have experienced before they ever arrived at our classroom door is often something that we cannot even comprehend.

The way I see it

by Pat Isaak President of The Manitoba Teachers’ Society It’s hard to believe that I am approaching the end of eight years at MTS, four as Vice President and four as President. The best part of the job has been the many opportunities I have had to meet and hear from teachers in staffrooms throughout the province. Those visits have given me a unique perspective on how much teachers’ lives have changed in a very short time. There are so many factors that influence Manitoba schools and classrooms, none more so than Government decisions and priorities. Since 1999, we’ve seen a number of changes, many of them for the better. Even with increases in public education funding, reduced standardized testing and greater professional autonomy for teachers, the demands on schools seem to grow faster and it gets more and more challenging for teachers to sustain the excellence that the public has come to expect from schools. Far and away the biggest change for teachers has been the changing face of our classrooms. Inclusion has meant that our classrooms are much more diverse than they have ever been. Special needs students in today’s classroom may face severe physical, developmental, or behavioural challenges or a combination of all three. Teachers are required to adapt the curriculum to meet the needs of every student. Although there has been mainstreaming (as it was then referred to) of students since the early 1980s, The Appropriate Educational Programming Act and regulations have profoundly affected the work that teachers do and has been the most significant change I have observed. In addition, there are more educational assistants in Manitoba schools. It is not uncommon for a teacher to have three or more EAs working in the classroom. Thus, teachers must not only plan for students, but must direct the daily work of EAs as well. 4 • KIT Spring 2011

The diversity that we have in our classrooms is something that teachers embrace. When I visit classrooms across the province, I am amazed at the level of skill, understanding and compassion that teachers demonstrate to each and every student. The second big change that I’ve noticed is the effect of technology on teachers. I started teaching in 1986, which doesn’t seem like that long ago. One of the first courses I taught was typing—and we were using typewriters! Since that time, computers have changed teaching in so many ways. Technology is a part of every classroom and every curriculum. But as big a role as technology plays in schools, it’s an even bigger part of students’ lives outside of school. The intrusion of technology into teachers’ lives that I’ve witnessed has had a tremendous impact on their workload, both in and out of the classroom. From technology in the curriculum to social networking and cyber bullying, teachers and students live in a world where information is at their fingertips, but where that information can do more harm than good. In 2010, when MTS surveyed teachers on the effect of technology on their working lives, they said the biggest impact was on correspondence. Email means that teachers feel they are on call 24/7. Finding balance has always been difficult for teachers and it’s more important than ever for teachers to find the downtime that we all need once in a while. While teaching has always been a challenging job, the expectations on todays’ teachers have never been higher. When MTS presented its Teacher Workload Taskforce Report to the province last year we asked the government to consider class size and composition limits in order to address the effect of the appropriate education programming legislation on teacher workload. I am hopeful that when the next MTS President reports on the changes he’s observed during his term that some of the issues raised in the taskforce report will have been addressed. We’ve had a decade of great success for teachers; I’ve been privileged to be a part of those successes. One thing that never seems to change is that teachers still become teachers because they want to change the world. They want to be a positive influence on their students, the schools and their communities. Change may be inevitable, but the human element of teaching is not only the same today, it’s more important than ever.


OP TIONS Winter 2011

2010-11 Organizational Change

We were very disappointed to learn that the executive of our largest Quebec association (AREQ) has decided to withdraw from membership in ACER-CART, stating that they wish to pursue other priorities. We asked them to review this decision but they did not change their opinion. The 2011 AGM will have to accept the resignation for it to become effective.

ACER-CART 2010 AGM Action Update

Almost all of the motions adopted at the 2010 AGM have now been acted upon. Support by member associations in contacting their federal MPs by phone, letter, or email to advocate for these motions was much appreciated. The items that lent themselves to lobbying the Government of Canada were: • to change tax legislation in such a way that charitable donations up to the amount of $1200 be accorded the same tax credits as those of political contributions; • to improve the Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS), . . . particularly the automatic inclusion of eligible pensioners; and • to increase CPP/QPP, OAS, and GIS benefits and to take other measures to ensure that seniors are able to avoid living in poverty. In addition, ACER-CART asked CNSO members to pursue lobbying the federal government on the issue of investment fraud against seniors. We also expressed concern regarding the loss of the long-form census survey. Responses of the government have been received and were predictable.

Committee Reports

The activities of the ACER-CART committees are noted below. Pension and Retirement Income Committee (Arnold Hull, Chair) The committee has been reviewing various sources of information and that which member associations were able to provide us concerning retired teachers in poverty. A report on this is being prepared for the 2011 AGM.

Communications Committee (Vaughn Wadelius, Chair)

The website is a good source of information about our national organization. Links to all member associations are an aid for those looking for comparisons among the members, updated member association contacts and annual general meeting locations and dates. In February, the website surpassed visitors 8000, since September 2004. One new feature, inaugurated in January, was a website page dedicated to information about the Congress of National Seniors Organizations (CNSO) of which ACER-CART is a member. Links to federal reports and CNSO issues are also featured on this page.

Health Services and Insurance Committee (Thomas Gaskell, Chair)

Tom continues to monitor various issues related to national health care and drug plans.

Legislation Committee (Helen Biales, Chair)

As a result of the withdrawal request of AREQ, the Bylaw and Articles are being reviewed for changes that may have to be made. In addition, a review of the process and parameters for accepting new organizational members is being undertaken.

2011 AGM Deadlines

Nominations are being accepted for the 2011-12 positions of President, and Regional Representatives (Atlantic, Ontario, Québec, West). Nominating forms are available on ACER-CART’s website and should be returned with a CV of the nominee by April 22 to Executive Director Norbert Boudreau. Director reports are also due by April 22. A simplified format for the report is available on the website. The April deadline date, this year, is to ensure that AGM documents are translated and sent out to the delegates well in advance of the June AGM.

Spring 2011 KIT • 5


President Comments Vaughn Wadelius We will be celebrating our 20th anniversary as ACER-CART when we meet at the 2011 AGM. A Strategic Planning seminar session was suggested as a way to review and redevelop our goals and action for the future. Annual written AGM reports from provincial Directors are an important feature of our AGM. My second (and last) year, as ACER-CART President, is

flying by. The loss of AREQ has been a sad development, for they were a founding member of ACER-CART. I sincerely hope they will return some day. On the bright side, our association with the Congress of National Seniors Organizations continues to strengthen. Three additional national associations have joined CNSO this year, making our collective voice of over two million even louder at the national level. Lobbying action taken by several groups (including us) seems to have prompted the government to consider the “no application” option for obtaining the OAS and GIS. While there are problems with initiating this, it is a move that could save time, administration costs, and help to ensure all qualifying seniors are included.

CIDA FUNDING REJECTED Submitted by Vaughn Wadelius, President/President, ACER/CART

On Friday, January 28, 2011, the Director of the Canadian Teachers' Federation International Programs, Barbara MacDonald Moore, was advised by CIDA staff that the 2010-15 program proposal, submitted by CTF for financing of its international work, had been rejected. CTF has been without CIDA money for four months while the approval process continued and will receive no funding from CIDA, unless we can quickly get the Minister of International Cooperation to intervene. The proposal to stop funding CTF's Project Overseas has shocked Canadian teachers (active and retired) and teacher organizations in developing countries, where Project Overseas has operated to the benefit of tens of thousands of teachers and their students. It has been so important to support volunteer teachers, to interact directly with teachers in other countries, while providing them with teacher inservicing. If you go to http://www.ctf-fce.ca/, you will see a petition, which CTF is asking us to sign. On the home page, you will also see a spot where you can see comments sent by various individuals, even representatives of some of the organizations CTF helped. Reaction to the decision, by CIDA, to cut funding to CTF International Programs has been widespread and heartfelt. Those who will no longer benefit from the program decision wish to thank you for signing the CTF petition. News and letters of support are posted on the CTF web site. Please check it often to get the latest information about the CTF campaign. We also ask you to help us spread the news. Over the past 50 years, Canadian teachers have accomplished great things in developing countries. It is our hope that this work will continue, as necessary, into the future. Please tell your friends and neighbours about the good works being accomplished internationally by Canadian teachers. Ask them to also get involved in the preservation of this program by signing our petition and writing their member of parliament.

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committee reports WELLNESS SEMINAR Lydia Heshka RTAM's Wellness Committee presented its fall seminar, on Wednesday, October 27, entitled "Manage Life Creatively." Three sessions were offered. Dietitian Liz St.Godard, from St. James/Assiniboia/Assiniboine South, Healthy Aging Resource Team, presented the first session, focusing on nutrition. As teachers, we know all the right answers. We know and trust Canada's Food Guide - even as it has evolved over time, with more and more emphasis on fruits and vegetables. We know we should have less salt, less sugar, less fat and more fibre in our diet. But we also acknowledge that eating is a social affair. Our memories of our "best meal ever" are never of ones we had on our own. As many of us are living alone, or perhaps as a couple, we were encouraged to: have two or three-people pot lucks; join a cooking club; plan ahead; adapt our favourite recipes; stock our pantry with foods we enjoy (pasta, spices, lentils); shop judiciously (flyers, bulk, unit pricing); and to treat left-overs as "planned-overs." Liz told us about free nutrition information we can access by calling: "Dial A Dietician" (788-8248 in Winnipeg, or 1 877 830-2892 in rural areas). Winnipeg also has three Healthy Aging Resource Teams serving: 1) River East/Transcona (940-2114) 2) St. James/Assiniboia / Assiniboine South (940-3261 or 940-2683)

3) Downtown / Point Douglas (9402269 or 940-2225). Over the last eight years, these resource teams have helped set up several cooking clubs. Members meet for more than cooking, eating and cleaning up. Socializing, fellowship, increased confidence, new recipes, new techniques and no pressure are all part of these cooking clubs. There are men-only, co-ed and women-only groups. Evidently, the men's groups are quite lively! See phone numbers above, if interested, or start your own club. Liz (at 9402683) has a cooking club manual to get you started. After a health break of delicious and nutritious muffins, cinnamon buns and different unique juices, Peggy Prendergast had us think about who we are, who we were, and who we are meant to be. During her presentation, titled "Living Creatively in Retirement," we examined all our own needs - physical, emotional, spiritual, social and intellectual. We listed our goals and objectives in each. We were reminded that each of us has the same main resource - TIME! 86,400 seconds each and every day! We can use them or we can lose them.

There are variables - controllable and uncontrollable: health, money, etc. Regardless of our resources, we must have a plan. We must use our time wisely. We must separate the urgent from the non-urgent, and the important from the not important. We must learn not to sweat the small stuff A bibliography of numerous books was shared to help us on our way to become who we were meant to be. All participants then enjoyed a gourmet lunch, catered by All Occasions Catering, Landmark. Everyone enjoyed the two salads, the chicken and all the fixings. Our afternoon session was titled ``Fashion For Less." Midge, from Second Sensation Boutique (475-0457), described her consignment business, located on Corydon Ave. Midge offers clients an opportunity to consign "like new" (less than two years old) label brands and quality items, or, to come and shop for unique clothing at a fraction of the cost of new retail. Sizes available range from zero to 3X. Models wearing outfits, available at Second Sensation, drove home the point that one can be stylish without breaking the budget. Another Wellness Seminar is tentatively scheduled for April, 2011. Details to follow in KIT.

RTAM TRAVEL SEMINAR

When Where

May 4, 2011, 9:30 a.m. to 12 noon Mcmaster House Manitoba Teachers' Society 191 Harcourt St. (Portage And Harcourt)

Featuring VOLUNTEERING IN HAWAII Working and relaxing on the beautiful island of Kauai THE MONGOLIAN EXPRESS Travelling through Russia by train HEALTH BREAK WITH SNACKS, COFFEE, TEA AND JUICE No registration required. For further information call Maureen at 467-8518 after April 8, 2011.

Spring 2011 KIT • 7


Emergency Medical Travel – Key Policy Provisions Pat Bowslaugh, Benefit Chair A number of major plan changes were made to the RTAM Travel Benefit effective November 1, 2010: the Base Trip coverage was increased from 30 days per trip to 62 days per trip; the lifetime maximum per person was increased from $1,000,000 to $2,000,000; the Trip Cancellation/Interruption coverage was increased from $6,000 to $7,000; and a lost/delayed luggage benefit of $350 was added. This article covers a number of pertinent Emergency Medical Travel policy provisions you should keep in mind, when travelling. For full details, please refer to the Certificates of Insurance that are available on the website www.johnson.ca/rtam. RTAM’s Emergency Travel is Comprehensive RTAM’s worldwide Emergency Medical Travel Plan covers sudden and unforeseen emergencies, outside your province/territory of residence or Canada. The Annual Base Plan coverage reimburses 100% of eligible emergency medical expenses, up to a lifetime maximum of $2,000,000, for an unlimited number of trips, each up to 62 days in duration. If the 62 day Base plan does not sufficiently meet your needs, supplementary coverage may be purchased, for each single trip longer than 62 days. Supplementary coverage, of up to 182 days total trip duration, is available for purchase, in 15 day increments. RTAM’s Base Travel plan also includes coverage for Trip Cancellation (before departure) and Trip Interruption (after departure) of up to $7,000 per trip, per insured person, and a lost or delayed luggage benefit of up to $350. Base Plan coverage starts the date you leave your province or territory of residence. It ends the earlier of the date you return to your province or territory of residence, or the 62nd day of your trip. If you purchase Supplemental coverage, for a single trip, the Departure Date would be the day you leave your province or territory of residence. The Trip Termination Date would be the earlier of the date you return to your province, or territory of residence, or the departure date indicated on your Confirmation of Coverage letter, as 8 • KIT Spring 2011

per your Insured Trip agreement. While many voluntary emergency travel policies include a pre-existing conditions limitation, which excludes coverage for expenses related to a pre-existing condition (i.e. if you were diagnosed, sought or received treatment within the year prior to departure), RTAM’s Travel coverage is not subject to a pre-existing condition limitation. However, a medical emergency, eligible for coverage under the Plan, must be sudden and unforeseen. What is a Medical Emergency? RTAM’s Travel Plan covers reasonable and customary (for the region in which treatment is provided) levels of Eligible Expenses resulting from a Medical Emergency. Medical Emergency means an emergency service rendered for the sudden and unforeseen onset of a medical condition, manifesting itself by acute symptoms of sufficient severity, that the absence of immediate medical attention could result in any of the following: • Permanently placing the individual’s health in jeopardy • Serious impairment to bodily functions • Serious impairment and dysfunction of any bodily organ or part or • Other serious medical consequences. What happens in the event of a Medical Emergency? In the event of a Medical Emergency, the travel assistance provider, Sigma Assistel, would direct you to the nearest appropriate medical facility. They would pay hospitals and other medical providers directly, wherever possible, except when you choose to pay the expenses yourself, or when the medical care provider refuses to accept payment directly from Sigma Assistel. To ensure expenses are covered, and to benefit from the cost management and other assistance services available, you must contact the 24-hour Sigma Assistel Centre: at the first onset of symptoms of a medical emergency, before seeking emergency medical treatment (or as soon as possible if medically incapacitated); in the event of a Trip Cancellation claim, prior to departure, or a Trip Interruption, post departure. You may call Sigma Assistel directly, any time of day


or night, at the following telephone numbers: Canada/USA (Toll Free) 1-877-775-3695 Other Locations (Call Collect) (514) 875-3695 Or Fax (514) 875-7729 Sigma Assistel will require: 1. your diagnosis 2. the hospital where you are being treated 3. and your family doctor information, in the event you need to be repatriated. Having your policy number, with Sigma Assistel (644182), will also help the claims process. RTAM’s Travel Plan provides for your return to your province of residence following the diagnosis of, or emergency medical treatment and / or diagnoses of, a medical condition, which requires continuing medical care, treatment or surgery. If you are deemed medically able to return to your province of residence, but you elect to have the treatment or surgery performed outside your province of residence, no benefits shall be payable, with respect to such continuing treatment or surgery. In the event of a medical emergency, you are required to contact Sigma Assistel immediately after the medical emergency, or as soon as reasonably possible. Sigma Assistel will open a claim file and will direct the medical treatment. If you advise Sigma that you cannot complete the full case-opening, during the initial telephone call, Sigma will provide you with: a) case number b) and a case-management number, which you should use to call Sigma back and complete the caseopening, at a better time. If you require additional information, or if you have any questions concerning this RTAM Plan, please visit the new website www.johnson.ca/rtam, or contact the RTAM Plan Administrator using the following contact information: Johnson Inc. Plan Benefit Services: 11120 – 178 Street Edmonton AB T5S 1P2 Telephone: (780) 413-6536 Toll Free: 1-877-989-2600 Fax: (780) 420-6082 E-mail: edmonton@johnson.ca

WELLNESS SEMINAR STAY IN THE GAME Date: WEDNESDAY, APRIL 20, 2011 Place: McMaster House, 191 Harcourt at Portage Time: 9:30 a. m. - 2:30 p. m. Registration: 9:00 a. m. PLEASE REGISTER AS SOON AS POSSIBLE. Registration will be limited to 60 participants and will be accepted on a “first come, first served” basis. HIGHLIGHTS: Information booths by senior-serving organizations. Program: 9:30 - 9:40 Opening remarks 9:40 - 10:25 Communicating Socially With the Computer Richard Denesiuk Creative Retirement Manitoba 10:25 - 10:40 Health Break 10:40 - 11:45 Keeping an Aging Body Working Like a Younger Body Candace Swick - Fitness Expert at the Rady Centre 12:00 - 1:00 Gourmet Lunch 1:00 - 2:15 Preventing Financial Abuse - Power of Attorney and Wills Sharon Tod - Lawyer with INKSTER CHRISTIE HUGHES LLB 2:15 - 2:30 Closing Remarks

WELLNESS SEMINAR REGISTRATION FORM Participant’s name_____________________________________ Address_______________________________City/__________ Town__________________________Postal Code___________ E-mail_________________________Phone________________ Please send $20.00 cheque payable to RTAM to: Maureen Recksiedler, P O Box 744, Stonewall, MB, R0C 2Z0 BEFORE April 08, 2011, contact Peggy Prendergast: 257 1962; AFTER APRIL 07, 2011, contact Maureen: 467 8518 or grecks@explornet.ca to inquire about space.

Spring 2011 KIT • 9


Notice of RTAM Policy Change Respectfully submitted by Rosalie Bornn Chairperson, Bylaws & Policy Committee The Bylaws and Policy Committee has continued with its mandate of the review and update of Section 2- Principles of RTAM and the existing RTAM policies. The following interim policy changes have the approval of the Board of Directors of RTAM and will be brought to the May, 2011 AGM in Steinbach for disposition:

Interim Policy Changes – 2010/2011

That Policy 10.02 (6) be numbered 10.02 (7) and that 10.02 (6) read: When on RTAM business out of Winnipeg, and when accommodation rates exceed the approved RTAM rate, all reasonable accommodation costs will be reimbursed. That the following change be made to SECTION 6: BOARD OF DIRECTORS of the Policy Manual, with appropriate re-numbering. (6.02 will become 6.03) Add: 6.02 Duties of Directors a) Each director shall be a member of at least one standing committee. That the following changes be made to SECTION 8: COMMITTEES of the Policy Manual, with appropriate re-numbering: i) That Policy 8.02 read: 8.02 Committee Formation An Ad Hoc Organizing Committee consisting of the President, Vice President and Past President shall: a. Be established each year at AGM soon after the elections have been completed b. Be responsible for recommending to the first meeting of the Board the membership of Board committees as well as their chairs. c. Make these recommendations from a list of names gathered by the AGM and Election Committee by inviting applications from: the Board; from readers of KIT and the Website; from Chapters and from attendees at AGM. d. Give consideration to committee membership diversity where possible. ii) That Policy 8.02 be re-numbered as 8.03 and be amended to read: 10 • KIT Spring 2011

8.03 Committee Make-up and General Responsibilities Each standing committee shall: a. Consist of a chair and a maximum of five (5) members (exclusive of the President), a majority of whom shall be directors, appointed by the Board of Directors at the first meeting of the Board from a list recommended by the Ad Hoc Organizing Committee. Additional members, if required, may be added by resolution of the Board. That SECTION 2: PRINCIPLES OF RTAM be included in the Policy Manual as follows: SECTION 2: PRINCIPLES OF RTAM 2.01 Liaison with MTS RTAM advocates: a) That it be represented at the AGM of MTS. b) That the RTAM representative(s) there have the right to speak to any motion that might affect retired teachers. c) That the Association may submit resolutions to the AGM of the Society for consideration. 2.02 Representation on the TRAF Board RTAM advocates: a) That RTAM be represented on the TRAF Board. b) That any member representing RTAM be named by RTAM. c) That any representation on the TRAF Board and its committees be proportional based on TRAF pension assets. 2.03 Role of ACER-CART RTAM advocates that ACER-CART: a) Take a leadership role in the public discussion of national issues. b) Speak for all retired teachers on national issues affecting them. c) Facilitate and promote liaison and mutual assistance among its member organizations. d) Promote the interests of its member organizations. e) Develop strategies for joint action on matters of common concern to member organizations. f) Co-operate with other organizations on matters of common concern. g) Promote and support public education. 2.04 Representation with Other Agencies RTAM advocates: a) That it be represented on any Provincial Government


or MTS committee whose objectives affect the economic welfare of, or services to, RTAM members. b) Co-operation with other organizations on matters of common concern. 2.05 Health Policy RTAM advocates: a) Support of the following general policy on national health care: i) Acceptance of the five core principles of the Canada Health Act ii) Adherence to national standards iii) Establishment of a funding formula iv) Meeting the demands for home care v) Supporting a national Pharmacare program vi) Providing accessible, affordable and timely health care to the elderly and b) Opposition to any legislation that would introduce user fees for medical care. 2.06 Retirement Income RTAM advocates: a) That a teacher is entitled to receive adequate retirement income. b) That inflation protection be provided to enable retirees to maintain their standard of living. c) That full inflation protection be the goal of the TRAF Cost of Living Allowance. 2.07 Five Year Pension Averaging RTAM advocates: a) That teacher pensions be based on a five-year average for both active and retired teachers; b) That the following be the basis of calculations for those with service prior to 1980: i) Active teachers who bought back to achieve a five-year average shall receive reimbursement of the cost of buyback plus accrued interest. ii) Retired teachers whose pension is based on both a seven-year average and five-year average shall receive a pension based on a five-year average. iii) Retired teachers who bought back their pension to achieve a five-year average for all years of service shall receive an actuarially based pro-rated amount of the cost of the buy-back plus interest. 2.08 Pension Surplus RTAM advocates: a) That, in decision-making regarding the use of teacher pension plan surplus, RTAM is recognized by government as the representative of retired teachers. b) That the Teachers’ Pension Act contain provisions for determining allocation of pension plan surpluses.

2.09 Pension Fund Investing RTAM advocates that: a) The first principle of management objectives should be to seek maximum returns for the benefit of the pension plan. b) Investment portfolio management decisions should be based solely on economic merit. 2.10 Advertising in RTAM Print and Electronic Publications a) RTAM and Chapter sponsored events may be promoted free of charge. b) Not-for-profit organizations that wish to place public service announcements; school or teacher reunion notices, or information on volunteer opportunities with service groups may do so free of charge. These may be promoted at the discretion of, and for a period as determined by, the Editor and/or Webmaster, based on criteria developed by the Communications Committee and approved by the Board. c) Commercial advertising that does not compete directly with an RTAM program or service may be included at the discretion of the Editor and/or the Webmaster at rates suggested by the Communications Committee, approved by the Board and published in RTAM print and electronic media. d) All advertisers should be informed that RTAM does not endorse or promote any products, services, or events presented in paid advertisements, the announcements, or other sections of its publications unless specified. e) The Editor, Webmaster and/or Board of Directors of RTAM accept no responsibility or liability for failure to insert an advertisement for any reason. In such instances, a full refund will be given. f) Where space permits, classified advertisements may be accepted. That Policy 3.01 c) be amended to read: When in the discretion of the Board of Directors of RTAM, it is consistent with the interests, aims and objectives of RTAM to cooperate with an external or commercial venture in distributing information to RTAM members the, where practical and with all costs being borne by the requesting group, such information may be distributed through 1) RTAM print and electronic media or 2) a bonded mailer to which RTAM will provide a single-use mailing list. That Policy 2.11 be deleted.

Spring 2011 KIT • 11


CHAPTER REPORTS OK-RTAM CHRISTMAS LUNCH Lorna Rothwell

The RWTA Sixtieth Anniversary Fall Fashion Show Submitted by Phyllis Kalinsky, Joan Anderson and Barb McDole

On December 10, twenty-eight members and friends of the Okanagan chapter of RTAM enjoyed a four course Christmas lunch, in the veranda of the historical Guisachan House restaurant, in Kelowna. Designed in the Indian colonial bungalow style, the house was built for the Earl and Countess of Aberdeen in 1891, as the focal point of a 480 acre ranch, and named after the family estate in Scotland. Today, it is surrounded by the beautiful gardens of Guisachan Heritage Park. Upon Lord Aberdeen's appointment as Governor General, in 1903, the family moved to Ottawa, but returned to Guisachan Ranch for vacations for many years. After lunch, we had a very entertaining re-gifting exchange, then wished each other farewel,l until our next OK-RTAM event in 2011.

HART BREAKFAST CLUB Denis Fontaine

From left to right: Dave Giesbrecht, Abram Wiebe, Tony Rempel, Denis Fontaine, Henry Dueck, Ed Laing, Alice Laing, Neil Wiebe, Victor Janzen, and Ron Kornelson.

Greetings to all from the Hanover Association of Retired Teachers. Several HART members meet for breakfast on the second Friday of every month in Steinbach where the 2011 RTAM Annual General Meeting will be held. Some welcomed the New Year with a breakfast get-together on January 14, 2011, at the Village Green restaurant to chat about everything under the sun dogs: trips to warmer climates, pension income, Cola, etc. HART is pleased to host the 2011 AGM on May 10 and 11. 12 • KIT Spring 2011

2010-2011 marks an important milestone for the Retired Winnipeg Teachers' Association. It is the sixtieth anniversary of the founding of the organization. The fall meeting of the RWTA was held September 30, with an overflow crowd in attendance. The first meeting of the season has usually included a fashion show and this year we had an unusual and very interesting variation on that theme. Fashions for the last hundred years were modelled by members, to the delight of the audience. Some garments were borrowed from the Virden Costume Closet and many members generously loaned their treasured outfits. There were examples of early pioneer costumes, the oldest being a dark brown suit and hat from 1900 - the "early school marm look." There were outfits from the Roaring Twenties, the Flapper period, the Bobby Sox era, and even a Hot Pants ensemble; clothing from across the decades. Fittingly, there were almost sixty outfits modelled in our sixtieth year! Splendid outfits included a black satin gown, with beaded sleeves, worn with a huge feathered hat, an engagement party ensemble from 1929. There was a rhinestone-trimmed, red satin ball gown and a mink stole, that had been worn, originally, at a Government House ball, in 1950. Another model


Hippie Bride-Chris Graham. Cheerleaders: Left to right-Linda Kullman,Pam Buhr,Dolores Tutkaluk.

wore a mauve silk dress with matching accessories, which had first appeared at the Queen's garden party, in London, in July, 1970. A highlight of the show was the wedding section with beautiful gowns and accessories, worn in the past by brides, bridal attendants and mothers of the brides. It was interesting to note the contrast between the brown wool wedding dress of 1903, and the heavily-beaded, white satin gown of 2005. The models were escorted onstage by tuxedo-clad members wearing suits that had been hand-

The QPARSE Winter Newsletter may now be found on the web at

http://www.qparse-apperq.org/e/newsletter.shtml or from the french page

http://www.qparse-apperq.org/f/newsletterf.shtml The Spring 2011 PEIRTA newsletter is available at www.peitf.com and www.peirta.com

tailored in Germany, in 1905. One of the tophats worn was of brushed beaver, lined with birchbark. Bessie Marie Hill did her usual outstanding job of organizing and coordinating the show and providing the commentary, which included a description of the vintage and history of each garment. Everyone attending agreed that it had been a splendid afternoon - a trip down Memory Lane, and a very fitting beginning for our special year.

LIFE MEMBERS December, 2010 Florence J. Bell, East St. Paul, MB January, 2011 Marie Louise Last, Winnipeg, MB Catherine M. Thexton, Stonewall, MB February, 2011 Marjorie B. Hadaller, Anola, MB Spring 2011 KIT • 13


REFLECTIONS FROM A RETIREE: so what is the cost of living? Part I Donna Goodman

Lugging my grocery bags into the house, I grumble as usual: “Oh no, there is no inflation - except on everything I buy. '"Now, I readily admit that I'd rather be facing price creep in Canada than floodwaters on a plain in Pakistan, but I cannot deny that there is still that nagging feeling. How realistic are the inflation figures we hear about and upon which our minuscule pension adjustments are based? How is the cost of living calculated? Is it possible that government and industry conspire to keep the official inflation rate lower than it is? Am I just confusing the cost of my high living with the high cost of living? In any case, I began to reflect and do a little research. What’s in your Basket? The commonly used broad measure of the cost of living in Canada is the Consumer Price Index, or CPI. Each month, Statistics Canada tracks the retail price of a representative shopping basket of about 600 goods and services, for an average household, including food, shelter, transportation, furniture, clothing and recreation. Items in the total basket are assigned a weight, supposedly to reflect typical consumer spending patterns. Alcohol and tobacco consumption, for example, comprise a 3% weight in the basket. But what does our own experience suggest to us about the present cost-of-living? How well does the official CPI reflect the typical basket of goods and services consumed by retirees? Just as there is no typical consumer who makes the identical purchases, month after month, year after year, there is no “typical” retired teacher. The globetrotting 56-year-old has significantly different financial challenges than a 90-year-old, seeking comfortable, affordable long-term care. That being said, here are some reflections. Disinflation, yes, but (or is that my butt?) We are told that we have disinflation – a newish word for a long period of very low inflation or a slowing or decline in the rate of inflation. The rate of increase of the CPI is reported as the percentage increase in the index over the past 12 months. In December 2009, the increase in the CPI for Canada, compared to December 2008, was 1.32%. The 2010 figure was 2.4%, the result of that jump at the pump. One can find both evidence – and exceptions – to the disinflation narrative. Yes, those lap-tops, HD TV’s, and digital cameras, purchased a few years ago, now cost significantly less, with more programs or pixels than one can ever need. But the electronics stores are unlikely to refund us the “savings,” but will eagerly pitch an expensive extended warranty. 14 • KIT Spring 2011

Yes, a toaster oven can be bought for 1/10 of the price one would've forked out 20 or 30 years ago –but one would be lucky, indeed, if its lifespan was a tenth of the old model. Is this planned disposability factored into CPI calculations? Granted, there may be “falling” prices at the dollar store or the big-box discount-mart. Does this not just seduce us into spending more on “stuff” that we really don't need, and then on storage products to organize it? True, gassing up doesn't cost as much as it did in the difficult summer of ’08, but energy costs still spike unpredictably and painfully. Do you use Transit Tom instead of driving? In nine of the last 14 years, the price of bus fare has increased in excess of the stated CPI. Hoping to escape on an airplane? Occasionally, flights do seem cheaper, but that’s before you add on the costs of luggage, lunch and pat-downs. Indeed, many items, like property tax rates and tuition may have been “frozen,” but the real price includes surcharges, user charges, and increased reassessments. Rent controls do help seniors but only until that dreaded ‘converting-to-a-condo' notice arrives. Yes, food prices fluctuate with seasons and specials. But. has Stats Canada considered product downsizing, the miracle by which a 980 ml jar of mayonnaise suddenly morphs into 890 ml? Advertised supermarket deals and Costco size packaging cause us to buy more than we need and we, consequently, throw out more. Smaller packages and servings carry a significantly steeper unit price – the increased cost borne by single seniors, especially those without wheels. For those who still have mortgages, a growing segment of seniors,it is true that rates are a fraction of what they once were. But this does not help us if we do not have a mortgage, and, isn't it ironic, that those of us who endured mortgage rates in the double digits are now rewarded with almost invisible interest rates on our golden-years savings? But, you say, aren't seniors cashing in when they sell their homes into an upward spiralling market? Not quite so simple. Last year, in Winnipeg, the average increase for the residential bungalow or two-storey that retired folk are likely unloading was around 10%; the price increase for that coveted condo was more like 30%. Do not forget that new condos seem to demand new furniture. Savings and Surprises We are told that costs are lower in retirement, about one third less. Supposedly, we save money on the costs associated with employment. Some of these predictions, however, do not


accurately relate to the modus operandi of typical teachers’ lives. If the purchase and dry-cleaning of business suits was not part of the usual expense of going to work then there is little savings to be realized. Likewise, there is little saving on pricey downtown restaurant lunches if a brown bag in the staff room was the usual fare. Sure, there's no longer commuting to and from work, but new hobbies and volunteer work mean there are still places to go. Oh, and did I mention the chauffeuring of grandkids to daycare, school or lessons? This brings us to the observation of Winnipeg financial planner David Christiansen in a magazine article about the myths of retirement. In his experience, the most unforeseen and most expensive surprise of retirement years is the costs associated with adult children. Some may not successfully launch from the nest and some may return home. Unemployment, perpetual education, relationship breakdown, or health problems – all are reasons whyour kids may have their hands out. In Spain, where unemployment for those under age 40 is high, it is now estimated that half of grandchildren are supported by their grandparents. That may not be the extent here, but, yet, I suspect that a fair bite is taken out of many pension cheques to help offspring and their offspring. Where Does All Our Money Go? Certainly everyday life seems to present us with the sense that our wallets are under attack. The Internet/cable provider frequently sends out “to serve you better” notices, i.e. price increases. The price of a single ticket for the ballet or a concert used to buy two tickets - and even that was never cheap. Restaurant prices constantly edge upward; servers seem to expect 15 to 20% of the newly-inflated bill rather than the 10 to 12% gratuity that used to be standard. The dentist, the drycleaner, the lawyer, the auto mechanic; all demand their COLA, unrelenting annual price hikes. Our aging homes put constant pressure on our pocketbooks. The furnace fails, the roof and plumbing leak. If you can find tradespeople that actually show up, their billing will not be one-third less. But, it is also our ageing bodies that significantly and relentlessly inflate our cost-of-living. We encounter new categories of expenses, for example, paying to have our grass cut or snow shovelled. Sooner or later, the cost of medical assists and devices, Depends products, even the astronomical parking fees at hospitals and clinics, take their toll. We learn about "tray fees," a euphemism for charges for selected medical services, not covered by Medicare. The increase in “Health and Personal Care”, which accounts for only 4.7% of the CPI basket, has exceeded the inflation rate for two decades. This is never more evident than at the drug store, where world-wide shortages and new designer drugs add to the tally. As we age, we increasingly need,or are prescribed, more drugs. A financial guru, whom I recently heard, advised

his audience to get into pharmaceutical stocks because of the ageing boomer population He declared, “65 is the patient age at which doctors forgo the ‘change-your-lifestyle’ lecture and instead just reach for the prescription pad.” If one does choose to live and eat healthily; prepare to pay. Stocking up on the canned tomato soup and plastic-cheese specials, at the grocery store, will not fit with that low-sodium diet. Lucky enough to make it into another year or to celebrate a birthday? Prepare to pay. Premiums for Extended Health Care for retirees rise annually; in September, 2002, my Blue Cross premium was $78.30; in January, 2011, it was $135.60. (Incidentally, what cost $100 in the CPI basket in 2002 rose to $117.50 in the same period.) With each “milestone birthday," we find that the cost of our travel or term insurance catapults dramatically. Is there a point in the future, I wonder, when the escalating costs of these ‘benefits’ will exceed the shrinking pension payout? My head hurts. Sticker Shock and Hardship Sticker shock describes the psychological impact of rising prices. I remember, decades ago, being impatient at my mother’s dismay over prices. “Get with it," I thought, and, that's easy to do, when one's wages and investments are rising at least as readily as the CPI (remember 19% Canada Saving Bonds?) Nowadays, I'm less smug when I take my frugal 91-year-old aunt out for an occasional lunch. She is unable to enjoy the meal - even though I am paying - because the menu prices are so much greater than she remembers or can comprehend. I begin to wonder what my diminished pension dollars will pay for, if I were to live another 20 or 30years. Increasingly, we may find that the rising costs of living, combined with a shrinking COLA, will cause some of us to make hard choices. At first, it might be a lunch out with friends or a night at the movies, a trip of a lifetime or a hearing aid? Perhaps, by skipping medications a couple times a week, the budget could be made to balance. Disillusioned with the disinflation thesis, one investment blogger recently wrote: “Could it be that inflation is already here, that it has infiltrated our defences and lurks in our very midst?” Stirring in a dash of conspiracy theory, he adds, that this is despite central bankers knowing “which lever to pull and which knob to turn, at precisely the right moment.” In the next Part Two, we will research some of the levers and knobs used in calculating the CPI. We will examine, too, the forecasts about and impacts of inflation

Returning to Teach?

Visit www.traf.mb.ca for more information.

Spring 2011 KIT • 15


HOW CHILDREN'S BOOKS GET WRITTEN AND PRINTED Carol Szuminsky Carol Szuminsky taught elementary school for 32 years in St. JamesAssiniboia School Division (21 years of Grade 2, after starting at Grade 1 and then moving to Kindergarten).

love this book! The story sees Mary and Bou, a f lying bison, rescue the Golden Boy’s torch so that he can so his job of watching over Manitoba at night.

In July, 2004, she published a children’s book called Why Penny Loved Peanuts that Grade 1 teachers could use a resource for The Five Senses science cluster. The original draft was written during maternity leave, after the birth of her daughter, who drew the book’s illustrations, when she was 15.

Around the same time, Carol proposed to Manitoba Conservation that she and her father would co-write a children’s book called Andrew Goes Fishing in Manitoba that would encourage children to become life-long anglers. Carol also started going out to schools to talk about writing/ publishing and to share the draft, in order to gain feedback from students at various grade levels. Carol printed 10 000 copies, all to be given away free – 3 000 reserved for public and school libraries and the other 7 000 for the general public.

Once Carol had satisfied the “everyone has a book in them” saying and achieved her goal, she thought her writing career was over. Then a parent said to her, “Breanne’s begging for a dog. We told her she has to prove that she’s responsible." That’s how Penny Picks the Perfect Pet came to be. Because it was difficult to market a self-published book, even it was professionally done, Carol decided to find a manuscript that was a “winner” and put it into print. A local publisher introduced her to Gwen Smid, an enthusiastic young lady who taught high school English and Geography in the River East Transcona School Division, and that’s how Mary’s Atlas: Mary Meets Manitoba came to be published in April, 2008. This book, with its brightly-coloured watercolour illustrations, painted by Sonia Nadeau, is a useful resource for teaching K-5 social studies and science curricula, and is in school and public libraries all across Canada. People of all ages, especially those who appreciate quality children’s literature that is both entertaining and educational, 16 • KIT Spring 2011

Shortly after the release of the “fishing book,” as it’s affectionately called, Carol proposed a second book on another local topic and again enlisted the help of students, which resulted in the publication of Penny Visits Oak Hammock Marsh, in December 2008. The previous spring, before retiring in June, 2007, Carol had her class work together to do illustrations for a story, Who Wants This Puppy? that was written by her fellow-teacher, Pat Ternovetsky. One student, a sevenyear-old boy, with obvious artistic talent, wanted to create his own version of the book in his spare time. As Carol watched the drawings unfold, she decided that someday she would turn this combination of talent, Pat’s text and Zane Belton’s illustrations, into a real book. The book launch took place at McNally Robinson, on November 17, 2008.

During the same time period, Carol was working on another project for Manitoba Conservation and its Sustainable Development Innovations Fund. This time it was a hardcover book called Penny Visits Oak Hammock Marsh that had a theme of environmental stewardship woven into the text, and the message that even young children can do small things to help protect their world. The book can be described as a 29-page narrative of Grandpa Brown teaching Penny everything he knows about the plants and animals she sees and hears that day at the marsh. The next book Carol chose to publish was more mainstream, but still contained relevant themes that parents and teachers could discuss with youngsters. Resa Ostrove, another long-time teacher who taught at the Gray Academy of Jewish Education, is the author of Freddie’s Problem, an enchanting story about a frog who’s experiencing his first bout of really bad gas, after eating too many flies. Jason Doll, an award-winning cartoon animator, created brilliant illustrations. The fourth member of the team was Lee Huscroft, a talented graphic designer, who used interesting techniques to bring the pages to life. We were all thrilled when “Freddie” was shortlisted for the 2010 Manitoba Book of the Year for Children (Younger Category). Gwen Smid moved to Ottawa and, in February 2010, the second book in the Mary’s Atlas series, Mary Meets Ontario went into print. In this book, Mary and Gavi the loon must investigate why the Great Lakes are drying up and enlist the help of the beavers to solve the problem. The story and


although mainly in Winnipeg, to speak about writing and publishing and to share the nine Peanut Butter Press titles with students. Her emphasize is on getting students to pick up the pencil and make an effort to record their thoughts on paper and then, as thoroughly as possible, edit for errors and make revisions. No two presentations are ever exactly alike, as Carol takes her cue from the students and teachers. She always stresses these words of wisdom: “When you think you’re done (writing), you’ve just begun, because that’s when the editing for conventions really begins."

illustrations introduce readers to famous places located in Ontario, such as Parliament Hill, the Rideau Canal, the CN Tower, the Royal Ontario Museum, Fort York, Casa Loma, and Niagara Falls. This book, along with Mary Meets Manitoba, is a must for every school and public library in the country, as will be the next book in the series Mary Meets Alberta. Carol is in the process of trying to get these books into the international schools overseas that teach either the Ontario, Manitoba or Alberta curricula. In December, 2010, the next book, The Windplane Man, was ready for publication. Patricia Anne Thain wrote her story, back in the 1950s, when she taught primary school in England. The story came with her to Canada, where she continued to use the storyline, to encourage her students to learn about geography and to write tales of adventure, in which the main characters would visit famous attractions located around the world. Pat was a teacher in Portage la Prairie and later moved to Oakville School. She passed away, in December 2008, and so never got to see The Windplane Man in print. It was her wish that her story be published and shared, to encourage young minds to think, to learn and most of all, to dream. It was also her hope that teachers and parents/grandparents would use the book's content as an educational tool. Carol is working hard to make Pat’s dream come true by getting copies of her book into the English schools, especially those in Norfolk County, where the story starts and finishes. Besides putting her time and energy into publishing and selling books, Carol visits schools around the province,

Carol can often be seen balancing a peanut on her nose or wearing her fly costume, while selling books at The Forks Market, during the summer and at Spring Break. She has also presented her Aspiring Young Writers course for River East Transcona School Division Continuing Education for the last couple of years and also gave a course she called, How to Self-Publish Your Book, for RETSD and St. James-Assiniboia School Division. This session, she’ll also be giving a course called, Writing Children’s Books, for Louis Riel School Division Continuing Education. Carol continues to give away free copies of the “fishing book” to the everyday people she meets, wherever she goes, as well as to public and school libraries across Canada. She’s going to run out soon. So, if you would like a free signed copy for your grandchildren or someone else, you can contact her in Winnipeg at 221-6401, to arrange a way to get the book to you. Once these books are all gone, or if you’re not into fishing , you may be able to convince Carol that you and your family need a free copy of Penny Visits Oak Hammock Marsh instead.

Ageless Question "How old is old?" Does this question leave you cold? Or is your response swift and bold? Don't be misled by numbers and by years For the intrepid souls face up to fears And over passing years shed no tears But welcome the future with open arms And increasing age rings no alarms For each day is a golden gift, And saddened spirits is known to lift. -Mary (Hrenchuk) Pankiw Copyright October 2, 1999 Spring 2011 KIT • 17


EVENTS AT THE FORUM ART CENTRE FOR THIS SPRING, 2011 We’re delighted to join in on the First Friday concept, already happening in the Exchange district of Winnipeg. Art classes start April 4 for 10 weeks at the Forum Art Centre, 120 Eugenie Street in St. Boniface. Open House & Registration is Saturday, March 12, from 1:00 – 4:00 and up to March 31, by phone. Free studio time with most classes, free parking with wheelchair access for most classes. For details visit: www. forumartinstitute.ca or call 235-1069. Spring is a great time to Learn How to Draw with many opportunities. This session includes Drawing/painting of People/ Perspective (English/French instruction), Out & About Sketching, Portrait & Life Drawing, Teen Art Drawing, Drawing & Watercolour Combo. We also offer Acrylic, Abstract Landscape in Acrylic, Retro Graphic Art Painting, Watercolour, Water Soluble Oil, Fresco – Plaster Sculpture, Clay Sculpture, All About Clay, Handbuilt Pottery, Medium of Your Choice, Curating Your Own Art Show, Gallery Inspiration, Artistic Digital Photography, Creative Digital Photography for Teens, Childrens & Teens Art. Workshops at the Forum Art Centre, 120 Eugenie Street: Digital Documentation of Your Art (last Sunday of each month by appointment), Making Your Own Canvas on March 24. For details visit: www.forumartinstitute.ca or call 235-1069.

What do you know about green burials? Submitted by Ann Ingalls Green burial has long been popular in the United Kingdom but North America has been slower to join the movement. You are invited to attend a free lecture by Jane Saxby, Administrator of Cemeteries, City of Winnipeg. Come to learn about this environmentally friendly practice and, specifically, what is available in Manitoba. Sunday, May 15, 2011 @ 2:00 St. Mary’s Road United Church - 613 St. Mary’s Road just south of the junction of St. Mary’s Road & St. Anne’s Road This lecture is presented by The Funeral Planning & Memorial Society of Manitoba (FPMS) as part of their AGM. FPMS is an independent, non-profit organization operated entirely by volunteers. FPMS is not affiliated with any religious group or funeral home. Our mandate is to encourage and assist members to plan their final arrangements. FPMS has been in operation in Manitoba for over fifty years. For more information go to: www.funeralsocietymb.org 204-452-7999 fpmsinfo@mts.net

Brandon College: Teacher Training Class of '60 Pat Bowslaugh Yes, fifty years ago the Brandon "Hallowed Halls of Learning" were at Brandon College and this is where one hundred prospective teachers gathered to take one year of "Teacher Training" in the fall term of 1969. Thus, it was time to have a "Golden Reunion" and "golden" it was! In the spring of 1960, 97 of us graduated and received an "Interim Certificate" which allowed us to teach for two years during which time we needed two summers of "summer school" courses and the recommendation of the Inspector of schools to obtain a "Permanent Certificate." The starting salaries for each of us ranged from $2 400 to $2 900 . . . PER YEAR! Needless to say, to have a reunion, we needed to find our classmates! This task was begun by Marjorie (Hoy) Wildeboer and Pat (Mowatt) Bowslaugh, with the gracious assistance of Carla Eisler from the Brandon Univerity Alumni Office. After many phone calls and lots of detective work, we found all except two 18 • KIT Spring 2011

CLASS A. Top row: Bob Finlayson, Sylvia Brown, Diane Fowler. Middle row: Darlene Bothe, Donna Airey, Marilyn Beddome, Phyllis Cochran, Faye Farley. Seated: Evenlyn Foster, Donna Cook, Pat Curtis, Eileen Blain.

of the graduates. Sadly, over the years, nineteen from our midst had passed away. However, there were great and exciting commmunications from so many of our members that we were able to plan events over the three-day BU Homecoming Weekend in mid October, 2010.


CLASS B. Top row: Gwen McNeill, Marg McAree, Pat Mowatt, Edna Houston, Reta Jenner. Middle row: JoAnn Inkster, Angie Hoyak, Judy Heasman, Darlene Hayward, Bernette Kirby, Marjorie Hoy. Seated: Kathleen Haigh, Carol McRoberts, Nancy Henton, Pat McLeay.

Distinguished Service Award The following criteria will be used to determine the recipients of any Distinguished Service Awards which might be presented at the 2011 AGM. Distinguished Service Award a) The nominee must be a member of the Association. The award may be given posthumously. b) The nominator for this award may be any member of the Association.

CLASS C. Louise Stephenson, Verna Waytowich, Margaret Robinson, Ann Shelvey, Bev Zimmerman, Vivian Riddell.

On Friday afternoon, 34 of us (with several spouses also present), gathered to reunite with stories of our careers, families and life's events. A catered dinner at Brandon's Seniors for Seniors (which had been prepared for the festivities by Marjorie, Verna (Waytowich) Sparks and Diane (Fowler) Taylor) provided the venue for much reminiscing . . . a marathon of chatter which lasted from mid-afternoon until evening. How great to reunite with people who now reside from Vancouver Island through the prairie provinces to Ontario. During this time we received written greetings from Mrs.Jean Burgess who had been one of our professors. We also held a power point memorium to acknowledge those who had passed away. On Saturday, many of the guests met at Brandon University for the luncheon and

c) The individual shall have provided, in the opinion of the Board, extraordinary service to the Association. d) The Award shall consist of a framed certificate duly signed by the President.

tour of the campus. What fun it was to recall events that had occurred years ago in the now beautifully refurbished Clark Hall, where most of our classes were held 50 years ago. A tour of the subsquently created "Education Building" included plans for our class to honour our late Dean, Dr. McCutcheon. On Sunday morning, we met for brunch at the City Golf Course restaurant, where we continued to share by recalling stories about our profs, residents' shenanigans and events that proved our grey matter still holds dear those many "golden moments." Many cameras clicked during this event and included are pictures of the attendees according to in which of the three classes they had been enrolled. It was agreed that we will meet again in five years!

e) If possible, the award shall be made at the Annual General Meeting. The travel and accommodation expenses incurred by the recipient to attend the meeting shall be born by the Association on the same basis and rates allotted to Chapter Presidents. f) The Board shall make the final decision on the granting of the Distinguished Service Awards. g) Deadline: Submission must reach RTAM office by April 15, 2011. Mail nominee submissions to: Richard Benoit RTAM President 204-2281 Portage Avenue Winnipeg, MB R3J 0M1

Spring 2011 KIT • 19


CENSUS JOBS The 2011 Census is staffing 35,000 jobs across Canada Period of employment: Early March to end of July (start date varies by assignment). Rate of pay: $14.72 to $18.04 per hour plus authorized expenses. Hours of work: flexible, but must commit to at least 20 hours/week Requirement: must be 18 years of age or over

PARTNERS FOR LEARNING

RETIRED TEACHERS interested in part time one-on-one tutoring, grades 1-8 and SY Maths, please fax resume to Partners for Learning at 477-1124 or email to pfl1@mts.net. PAID AD

Apply now / tell a friend. www.census2011.gc.ca 1-866-773-2011 – TTY: 1-800-363-7629 EMPLOIS AU RECENSEMENT Le Recensement de 2011 embauche 35 000 personnes à travers le Canada Période de l’emploi : début mars à la fin juillet (la date de début de l’emploi varie selon la tâche) Taux de rémunération : 14,72 $ à 18,04 $ l’heure plus les dépenses autorisées Heures de travail : flexibles, mais doit s’engager à travailler au moins 20 heures par semaine Exigence : doit avoir 18 ans ou plus Postulez dès maintenant/Dites-le à un ami. www.recensement2011.gc.ca 1-866-773-2011 – ATS : 1-800-363-7629

Celebrating the Big 60

Retired Women Teachers' Association on April 14, 2011 at the Annual General Meeting Need more information? Call an executive member. Normal School

CLASS of 1955-1956, 55th Reunion May 28, 2011, PNS site on Shaftsbury, Banquet A time of sharing experiences, reminiscing and celebrating. The Committee is trying to contact all members. Send names and addresses and request for information 55th PNS Reunion, Class of 1955-56 330 Montrose Street, Winnipeg, MB R3M 3M8 or email: pns55reunion@gmail.com UNICEF Employment is seeking qualified candidates to join our donation officers team. This is a fantastic opportunity to build an extremely rewarding career. These opportunities would suit people who need flexible working arrangements by working directly from their computer at home or work. To apply, contact Email: unicefjobs@excite.fr or for more information and application online, click here to APPLY NOW: http://www.cetitravel.com/pub/employ/index.html 20 • KIT Spring 2011

MANITOBA NORMAL SCHOOL REUNION CLASS of 1952 - 1953 Plans are underway for the Class of 1952 - 53 to celebrate our 58th year reunion Canad Inns, Polo Park September 12, 13 & 14, 2011 Monday, September 12: Tuesday, September 13:

Registration / Meet & Greet Activities, visit & lunch at the old Normal School Banquet & Dance in evening Wednesday, September 14: Farewell Brunch Bessie-Marie Hill: (204) 477-4580 / bmhill@mts.net or Eileen (Swan) Sokalski: (204) 885-9654 / blumer1@mts.net Contact your friends. More details later.

MANITOBA NORMAL SCHOOL Class of 1953-1954 will be celebrating our 58th year reunion on Saturday, September 22, 2012 in Brandon, Manitoba at the Royal Canadian Legion Hall 560-13th Street East For information contact Marg Cullen: mcullen@wcgwave.ca or 204-727-8833 Information and registration forms will be sent in June, 2011 to all members whose address is known. To report any changes in your mailing address, phone number or e-mail contact: Matt Kawchuk: mrmatt1@mts.net or 204-728-8432

Garden City Collegiate, Winnipeg, MB 50 Years (1961-2011)

REUNION May 20, 21, 22, 2011 Check out the Reunion Website gc50threunion.ca / Phone: 339-2058


Linking Intergenerational Friends of the Environment at Assiniboine Park

Manitoba Teachers’ College Class of 1958 - 59

The Assiniboine Park Conservancy is hosting a unique intergenerational eco-stewardship program this summer called LIFE (Linking Intergenerational Friends of the Environment). The basis of the LIFE program is to host a series of intergenerational workshops promoting environmental awareness and appreciation by using the natural assets of Assiniboine Park for mutual exploration and discovery. Each workshop will be structured around a new and exciting theme, such as “the trees in our forest”. Assiniboine Park will host these workshops once a week during the morning or afternoon, through the months of July and August. The emphasis of these workshops is to encourage different generations to join together and engage with the natural environment. Our ultimate goal, however, is to highlight, celebrate and promote how the interconnections between generations and our environment are essential to creating a sustainable future. If you are interested in sharing your passion for nature with a child this summer please call the Assiniboine Park Programming office at (204) 927-6070 or email parkprograms@ assiniboinepark.ca .

Celebrating our 52nd Year

WINDSOR PARK COLLEGIATE 50TH ANNIVERSARY FACULTY BRUNCH

SATURDAY, MAY 14, 2011 NORWOOD HOTEL 11:00-2:00 SOUP/SANDWICH/DESSERT BUFFET CASH BAR TICKETS: $20 Please go to the Windsor Park Collegiate web site (via the Louis Riel site) to register if you are current or former staff.

DR. LOUISA LOEB SEVENTH ANNUAL REUNION PERMIT TEACHERS of MANITOBA

Where: Viscount Gort Hotel When: Thursday, July 14, 2011 Time: 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Registration begins at 10 a.m. All teachers who taught on PERMIT are welcome to attend. Further information to follow Contact Keith Boughton at 204 - 253 – 4262

May 25, 2011 Centro Caboto Centre PAID AD 1055 Wilkes Avenue, Winnipeg, MB For more information, contact: Emily Jansen-Williamson: 204-837-5668 For address/phone number/email changes, contact: Dorothy Danielson-Olafson: dolafson1@shaw.ca Registration forms will be sent (postal/email) in January, 2011

River East Collegiate 50th Anniversary Reunion 50th Anniversary Reunion June 24 and 25, 2011. Tickets available at www.rec50.ca Two-day event: a Gourmet Meet and Greet, at the Victoria Inn, on Friday, June 24; an Open House, at the school, from 1 - 3 Saturday afternoon; and a Gala Dinner and Dance, with the Ron Paley Orchestra, on Saturday, June 25, at the Convention Centre. MCs for the evening are: REC alumni Sylvia Kuzyk of CTV and FAB 94.3's Tom Milroy. Early bird ticket prices are available until April 30.

THIRD ANNUAL RURAL PERMIT TEACHERS' REUNION Prairie Homestead Museum 3 Miles North of Elm Creek On Highway 13 and 1 3/4 Miles West, turn at Mile 49 Thursday May 26, 2011, from 9 A.M. to 4 P.M. A hot meal served at Noon Please bring items for the Memorabilia Table Bring your camera and written stories to be read out. Information and Registration Forms Contact Ken Switzer at 745-2770 or 436-3600 Spring 2011 KIT • 21


Nominations - RTAM: Board of Directors 2011-2012 Nominations for the Board of Directors of RTAM have been solicited since November 27, 2010, and will continue up to and including April 7, 2011 (4:00 p.m.). The term of office is one year. Board members and nominators must be full members in good standing of RTAM. A Candidate is eligible for nomination to exactly one Officer position and/or as a Director. An unsuccessful candidate for an Officer position has the right to stand for Director. The positions open to election on May 11, 2011, are: Officers: President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer Directors: up to 15 Directors may be elected. Nomination Process: • Nominations will be received by the Elections Committee up to 4:00 p.m. on Thursday, April 7, 2011. Please forward to: RTAM (Nomination), 204-2281 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg, MB R3J 0M1 • Nomination(s) must be accompanied by a signed statement from the nominee to acknowledge that the nominee is willing to accept the nomination. • Please note that, based on the By-Law direction from the 2009 AGM, there will be an additional opportunity to nominate from amongst those who are present in the AGM assembly. It is, however, to the advantage of the nominee to have the nomination submitted by the deadline in order that their biography can be printed and circulated prior to the election. • In addition, any nominations from the floor will, by policy, require the endorsement of ten (10) full members of RTAM who are in attendance. Please note that on the floor of AGM there will be a thirty (30) minute time frame from the time nominations open to nominations close. If you have any questions, please call: Elections Committee Chair: Pat Bowslaugh at (204) 728-4924, or email bowslaugh.pat@brandonsd.mb.ca Clarification: Definition of a full RTAM member according to the by-laws: Full RTAM Members include a certified teacher in receipt of a pension from TRAF, or a retired Manitoba-certified teacher who is not eligible to receive a pension from TRAF. Any person qualified for full membership shall become a full member upon payment of the set membership fee. Associate members are not eligible to nominate, endorse or vote.

Nomination Form 2011-2012 As a full RTAM member, I nominate the following full RTAM member (please print): Nominee's name: Mailing Address: Nominee's Phone:

Email:

For the position of: Officer (check no more than ONE position) oPresident oVice-President oSecretary oTreasurer and/or ofor the position of Director The signed permission of the candidate is attached: oYes oNo, or: The signed permission of the candidate may be included in the following space.

Please forward to: RTAM (Nomination), 204-2281 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg, MB R3J 0M1

22 • KIT Spring 2011


RETIRED TEACHERS’ ASSOCIATION OF MANITOBA 2011 Annual General Meeting MAY 11, 2011 Brass Lantern, Steinbach

All who register are invited to a reception hosted by RTAM on Tuesday evening, May 10, at the Brass Lantern, Steinbach, MB.

Program

TUESDAY, MAY 10 11:00 am Registration 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm Chapter Presidents’ Meeting with RTAM Board 1:00 pm - 4:00 Registration continues 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm Reception with cash bar 8:00 pm Distinguished Service Award(s) 8:30 pm Entertainment WEDNESDAY, MAY 11 8:00 pm - 8:45 am 9:00 pm - 11:45 am Noon - 1:00 pm 1:00pm - 1:30 pm 1:30 - 4:00 pm

Registration Meeting Session and Board Elections Lunch TRAF Meeting Session

Hotel Reservations Make your own hotel reservations (reference RTAM) Days Inn: Phone 320-9200 Sleep Suite: Phone 326.1324; Frantz Motor In: Phone, 326.9831

RTAM 2011 AGM REGISTRATION May 10 and 11, 2011

Register before April 30, 2010 Please Print! Name: Address: City & Prov. Postal Code: Phone: Email: Chapter Name: Full Registration: (includes reception, meetings & lunch) __________@ $30.00 = $ Guest attending ONLY noon buffet (Wednesday, May 11) _______@ $20.00 = $ Dietary considerations: Registration total $ Guest interested in a Wednesday activity? ___Yes ___No Make cheque payable to RTAM. Office Use only: Received:__________ Mail to: RTAM - AGM 2010 Full/Assoc. member:_________ ($30.00) Lunch Guest:________________ ($20.00) 204 - 2281 Portage Avenue Board Member:______________ (n/c) Winnipeg, MB R3J 0M1

Thank you for registering before April 30, 2011.

Chapter President:___________ (n/c) 2nd Chapter Rep:____________ (n/c)

Spring 2011 KIT • 23


Coming Events April 20 Wellness Seminar May 4 Travel Seminar

May 10 Chapter Presidents RTAM Board May 11 AGM Steinbach

RTAM Plans administered by Johnson Inc. If you require information and brochures, or if you have any questions concerning these plans (Dental, House Insurance, Long Term Care, Life, Emergency Medical Travel) contact: Johnson Inc. Insurance Benefits Administration 11120 178th Street, Edmonton AB T5S 1P2 Toll Free 1-877-989-2600 Phone (780) 413-6628 Fax (780) 420-6082 Email: cgrandish@johnson.ca

Photos:

Photos enhance your submitted material; however, digital photos must be taken at 1500 pixels. If mailing in photos, send professionally developed photos only.

Notice to paid KIT advertisers Please send your hard copy ad and cheque to the Editor (payable to RTAM) before each deadline. Ads without accompanying cheque will not be printed. Please send the paid ad via pdf file to the Editor.

Have you moved or changed your address? Contact TRAF at 949-0048 or toll-free at 1-800-782-0714 or by e-mail at info@traf.mb.ca or by mail/ change of address card to: TRAF 330 Market, Winnipeg, MB R3T 4F8

Publication Agreement Number 40037581 Return undeliverable Canadian addresses to: RTAM, Box 252 Neepawa, MB R0J 1H0

Advertising in KIT The Editor and/or the Board of Directors of RTAM accept no responsibility or liability for failure to insert an advertisement for any reason. In such instances, full refund will be given. Advertising Rates for KIT per issue are: 1/16 page (9.53 cm. wide x 3.2 cm. deep) 1/8 page (9.53 cm. wide x 6.5 cm. deep) ¼ page (9.53 cm. wide x 12.7 cm. deep) ½H page (19.6 cm. wide x 12.4 cm. deep) ½V page (9.53 cm. wide x 25.7 cm. deep) 1 page (19.6 cm. wide x 25.7 cm. deep)

$100.00 $150.00 $200.00 $250.00 $250.00 $300.00

add 5% GST

Free Public Service Announcements: Not-for-profit organizations who wish to place public service announcements, volunteer opportunities with service groups, school or teacher reunions are encouraged to do so. Submissions are printed free of charge. Advertising on the RTAM Web Site: Membership reunions and Chapter events may be promoted on the RTAM web site at the discretion of and for a period determined by the Webmaster. There shall be no fee for posting these events. The Retired Teachers’ Association of Manitoba does not endorse or promote any products, services or events presented in paid advertisements, the Announcements or Volunteer Opportunities sections unless specified. The Editorial Committee reserves the right to print, reject and/or edit for clarity, all materials received.

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The Editor of KIT Retired Teachers’ Association of Manitoba Box 252 Neepawa, MB R0J 1H0

All materials for the next issue of KIT must be typed and e-mailed to dsage@mts.net and received by

5:00 pm February 25, 2011 Materials published herein do not necessarily represent the policies nor the views of RTAM. 24 • KIT Spring 2011

RTAM Spring 2011  
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