Tag Archives: Teachers

Attempts to get away with defamation in the name of opposing hate

The use of amorphous terms like “hate” or “anti-Semitism” to defame and silence people who speak out against Israel’s occupation of Palestine and who advocate for Palestinian rights.

By Mira Katz

A serious issue at this time in Ontario is the use of amorphous terms like “hate” or “anti-Semitism” to defame and silence people who speak out against Israel’s occupation of Palestine and who advocate for Palestinian rights. It is also extended to apply more broadly to matters of war and occupation. Educators in particular are being targeted, with the allegation that by opposing Israel’s occupation or even sharing information which clearly opposes occupation in a general sense, they are spreading “hate” and anti-Semitism. These allegations are then used to trigger police powers to either suspend educators from work or prevent them from getting work. 

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Troubling expansion of powers to subject teachers’ conscience to scrutiny

There Is No Such Thing as a Right to Defame

By Enver Villamizar

One of the programs of the different provincial governments in Canada has been to limit educators’ professional judgment in various ways while at the same time increasing the government’s ability to decide what teachers can and cannot say or do in the classroom or outside of the classroom. This comes at a time that governments are attempting to impose retrogressive changes to the content of education such as is the case in Alberta with the new K-6 curriculum or in Ontario with new Health and Physical Education and Math curriculums. A definite direction of these governments is to divert from their anti-social restructuring of the state, and in this case of education, by claiming that the biggest problem in education is educators and their unions in order to justify trying to silence them or ignore their expertise. Thus, alongside the changes to education there has been a campaign to demonize and threaten educators for speaking out in general on matters of concern such as the rights of Indigenous peoples, pipelines or matters of war and peace.

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Resistance of teachers and education workers in Nova Scotia; Defeat the vicious anti-social offensive which targets teachers, education workers and public education

Teachers rally in Yarmouth, December 6, 2016.

By MIRA KATZ

As a result of the resistance of teachers and education workers in Nova Scotia, joined by other working people and students, the Liberal government of Stephen McNeil has backed down on its threats to pass legislation to impose contracts on teachers who are beginning a work-to-rule campaign by withdrawing voluntary extra-curricular activities. The government has also been forced to back down on its threat to lock students out of school while debating this legislation. Continue reading

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Filed under Canada, Nova Scotia Government

The dignity and vocation of the teacher

MARCH 19, 2001 - HAVANA, CUBA: Elementary school students play before the start of classes at a school in the Vedado section of Havana, Cuba, March 19, 2001. Cuba's education system is widely considered to be one of the best in the developing world and Cuba's illiteracy rate is among the lowest in the world. PHOTO BY JACK KURTZ WOMEN EDUCATION FAMILY CHILDREN

Elementary school students play before the start of classes at a school in the Vedado section of Havana, Cuba | JACK KURTZ

I saw an interesting interview in the context of Obama’s visit on CNN with a Cuban lady teacher, who caused me to think about those who teach. You have a noble profession. Of course, the American TV was trying to make her ashamed she was not paid so much, and her school did not have great technical resources like computers for the children. She replied, “yes, that is true, but for us teaching is more like a labour of love. And in what countries are teachers paid so much?! Continue reading

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Filed under Americas

US academia’s indentured servants

Alternet – The New York Times reported that 76 per cent of American university faculty are adjunct professors – an all-time high. Unlike tenured faculty, whose annual salaries can top $160,000, adjunct professors make an average of $2,700 per course and receive no  by Text-Enhance” href=”http://webmail999.bellaliant.net/do/redirect?url=http%253A%252F%252Fwww.alternet.org%252Feducation%252Facademias-indentured-servants%2523″ target=”_blank”>health care or other benefits. Most adjuncts teach at multiple universities while still not making enough to stay above the  poverty line. Some are on welfare or homeless. Others depend on  charity drives held by their peers. Adjuncts are generally  not allowed to have offices or participate in faculty meetings. When they ask for a living wage or benefits, they can be fired. Their contingent status allows them no recourse.

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Mass rally in Toronto opposes McGinty’s attacks against teachers, education workers and the rights of all

SOME 20,000 teachers and education workers and their supporters from all over Ontario rallied at the Ontario Legislature on August 28 in a powerful demonstration of their opposition to the introduction of Bill 115, the Putting Students First Act, by the McGuinty Liberal government. Ontario Political Forum* reports that the teachers and education workers were supported by delegates from teachers’ organizations all over the country and by contingents of workers and their organizations from the public and private sectors. Bill 115 is draconian anti-worker legislation that strips teachers and education workers of their right to collective bargaining and right to strike and cuts teachers and support workers pay through a two-year freeze on wages, unpaid days and changes to wage grids. A rally for northern teachers and education workers was also organized in Thunder Bay. Full report...

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Filed under No Harbour for War (Halifax)