Letters to the Editor

MLA's office blocked by teachers' signs

Editor: On Wednesday afternoon, I happened to stop by Langley Events Centre ticket centre and saw that the office of the MLA located there had pink signage all over it. Once home, I saw a photo on The Times  website which was very different from what I saw at the site.

At the location, two of us saw all of the pink signage puposely affixed to all windows and doors of the MLA’s office, completely blocking access. In my opinion, such a display was no different than a mess of graffiti or broken windows left for someone else to clean up. I thought that probably a dozen upset or radical teachers had left this mess.

The news report shows me that it wasn’t a dozen malcontents. There were a reported 1,500 who were there leaving the mess, cheering or quietly condoning this action, and the photo shows one of their prime representatives leading this behaviour.

I thought the messages left among their clutter were self-serving.The message that has bothered me the most, which the BCTF and LTA have spent millions of dollars in advertising on,is that the teachers are taking their actions on behalf of the students and children. Now, I don’t doubt that a majority of teachers do ascribe to the professionalism of educating and a valuable school life experience of extra activities, and that is an easy advertising sell.

I haven’t heard one teacher yet say that they will work harder for that raise of $7,200 to $11,100 that they are asking for. They just demand it. Class sizes may have some educational justification, and they may not have.

I think all current teachers are from the days of larger class sizes themselves, and they did well by that system. Labour bargaining class size is bargaining a working condition. A simple class size formula allows for statistics, and one can make statistics say most anything.

Is putting class size in a tight little box also keeping thinking and education in a box, rather than thinking and doing outside of the box?

The BCTF is a union that represents those who pay dues. Our children do not pay union dues. The BCTF only has a myopic view of getting the most it can for the teachers. What the teachers get comes from the taxpayers and general public.

The BCTF negotiate only in the specific interests of the teachers and its demands are completely self-centred, as if there are no other concerns such as health care, homelessness, elderly care, policing, infrastructure and many other societal needs that taxes pay for.

Even though the teacher and BCTF advertising is promoting children, they are negotiating solely for themselves. Their job actions in the many long negotiating disputes over many years have to have had some collateral damage on students, the ones they now claim this is all about.

What I saw at the MLA office was cheap, small, vindictive, myopic, a publicity stunt, wasteful, disrepectful and bullyish. What I read in your website is that 1,500 teachers did this. They call themselves professional.

Matt Lock,


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