Teacher workloads addressed through a new committee

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Legislation to enforce a three-year contract between the Alberta Government, the Teachers’ Association, and Alberta School Boards has now been proclaimed.  At their regular meeting on June 20, 2013 the Clearview School Board started the process to establish a local Internal School Jurisdiction Committee mandated under the new framework agreement.
To better describe the committee, Clearview Trustees have chosen to call it the Internal Teacher Workload Committee (ITWC). It is a joint committee comprised of two trustees, a central office representative, teachers named by the bargaining unit, and a facilitator provided by Alberta Education.
The ITWC is not to be adversarial, but collaborative and cooperative in working towards a common goal—reducing “overhead” for teachers so that they can get on with the job of teaching.
“I’m interested to know what issues are coming up.  If we (the school board) have policies and procedures that aren’t central to the educational goals of our district, then we would like to change,” said Ken Checkel, board chairman.
There are appeal mechanisms in place should problems arise amongst committee members.
The board appointed Karen Holloway of Castor and Patty Dittrick of Stettler to sit on the committee. Superintendent, John Bailey will represent central office and Bill Hoppins has been appointed provincial facilitator.
The first meeting was held in Stettler on June 27, 2013 with school principals, Corey van Zandbergen of Byemoor and Daram Van Oers of Castor representing the bargaining unit.
Three more teachers are yet to be named.
The committee must complete an initial report by October 31, 2013 which will include an initial action plan and recommendations for further study.
Stettler Gym Space
There is a community feeling in Stettler that more gym space is needed. The idea of a jointly-owned gym, built on school board property, has been bounced around for some time.
Clearview Trustees, at their regular board meeting on June 27, 2013, felt it important to first analyze what the facility needs are at the Stettler Schools before any approach is made to the Town and County of Stettler.
Trustees Cheri Neitz of Erskine and Patty Dittrick of Stettler have been named to work with the appropriate division staff and the principals of the Stettler Schools to gather information and report back to the board in early fall.
A final decision on whether to approach the Town, County and government on a jointly-funded gym will be made after the elections and the new school board is in place.

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