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Ford government to cut more than 3,400 Ontario teaching jobs over four years

Friday, April 5th, 2019

… for an estimated annual saving of $292-million by the fourth year… The job cuts would work out to an average of less than one teaching position for each of the province’s almost 5,000 publicly funded elementary and secondary schools… The teachers unions have objected to the plans for increased class sizes and mandated online courses for high schools – changes that prompted thousands of students to walk out Thursday.

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Ontario teachers’ union says increased class sizes could result in thousands of lost jobs, vows to fight the changes

Friday, March 22nd, 2019

Ms. Thompson has said that the increases in high-school class sizes would bring them in line with class sizes in other jurisdictions… She has also said earlier this week that increases in high-school class sizes will help students become more resilient, and better prepare them for university and work… Those comments were criticized by educators, who say she provided no evidence to back up her claim.

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Ontario to look into school exclusions of children with autism

Thursday, March 14th, 2019

… families with children in many parts of the country who have intellectual and developmental disabilities are increasingly being asked to pick up children early, start their school day later or keep them home for an indefinite period because of behavioural issues… the Ontario Autism Coalition, which advocates for families, have been calling on the government to hold public discussions on possible legislation and policy changes surrounding exclusions of special-needs students with behavioural issues.

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Ontario government announces new supports for schools ahead of change to autism program

Tuesday, March 12th, 2019

… the government will subsidize an additional qualification course for teachers on supporting students with autism, but that won’t happen until the fall. Additionally, Ms. Thompson said she is asking school boards to dedicate a professional activity day for teachers on how to support children with autism… Many of these children currently attend school on a modified schedule, and parents have said cuts in funding will leave them with little choice but to send their children to school more frequently, even full-time… “All that this [announcement] does is it dumps the responsibility for autism therapy onto the schools. Teachers are not therapists.”

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Ontario government’s lawyer says teachers can use own judgment in sex-ed lessons

Saturday, January 12th, 2019

ETFO president Sam Hammond said he was surprised to hear the government’s position on using the 2015 curriculum as a resource… He said that if the government had told teachers that they were free to use their professional judgment and the 2015 curriculum as a resource in implementing the current curriculum, “we wouldn’t be here today, quite frankly.” Instead, Mr. Hammond said the government chose to publicly threaten teachers.

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Advocates for students with disabilities call on Ontario to stop school exclusions

Monday, January 7th, 2019

Autism advocates in Ontario are calling on the province to remove a principal’s power to exclude students from school for an indefinite period, saying it is being misused as a disciplinary measure that disproportionately targets children with special needs… families with children who have intellectual and developmental disabilities are increasingly being asked to pick up kids early, start the school day later or simply keep them home for days.

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Looking for the cracks in medicare? Try the Ontario-Quebec border

Thursday, November 11th, 2010

Nov. 11, 2010
At only 26 years old, the Canada Health Act is ailing. The act guarantees universal health care, setting out key principles of access and affordability – one of which suffers from a serious case of neglect.
Under the portability requirement, every Canadian is entitled to full medical coverage, no matter where he or she lives, and provincial health insurance plans are supposed to be good anywhere in the country. But that tenet is showing cracks at the Quebec-Ontario boundary. Quebec patients are turned away or pay out-of-pocket for medical services outside their home province, essentially denied portability.

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Posted in Health Policy Context | 2 Comments »


Women at work: still behind on the bottom line

Saturday, September 11th, 2010

Sep. 08, 2010
Canadian women best their male counterparts in high school, college and university, but they fall starkly behind on the bottom line – in their paycheques. And the disparity looks even worse when compared with other developed countries. The findings… are partly the result of women often choosing less lucrative occupations than men – social work, say, as opposed to engineering – as well as entrenched biases in the workplace. Less clear is why… Canada lags in pay equity.

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Ontario schools crack down on retirees who ‘double-dip’ with supply jobs

Monday, April 26th, 2010

Apr. 26, 2010
A 20-year-old policy meant to deal with teacher shortage that has since evaporated allows retirees to teach as much as half the school year, or 95 days, in the first three post-retirement working years and 20 days in following years… The government and the teachers’ federation have not indicated whether changes are coming to the self-policing system and loopholes that allow teachers to work beyond any allotted days without their pensions being affected.

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Posted in Education Debates | 6 Comments »


Ontario, teachers vow to clamp down on cash spent rehiring retirees

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010

Apr. 20, 2010
Through access-to-information requests and appeals to Ontario’s 10 largest school boards, representing half the student population, The Globe and Mail uncovered a system rife with loopholes that enable retired teachers to pad their pensions at a cost to taxpayers of millions of dollars a year. The loopholes were put in place 20 years ago to help the province cope with a teacher shortage.

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