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Teachers' Federation urging voters to put kids first

Thursday, June 05, 2014   by: Staff



The Algoma District Elementary Teachers’ Federation (ADETFO) is urging voters to ‘put kids first’ on June 12 by voting for candidates who support a strong education system.

ADETFO is supporting Celia Ross, the NDP candidate in the Sault Ste. Marie riding, and NDP MMP Michael Mantha in the Algoma-Manitoulin riding.

“Students and teachers continue to feel the effects of the Liberal Government and Bill 115, which caused chaos in the schools,” said ADETFO President Kelly Holley. “Our choices also recognize that the Tim Hudak Conservatives have pledged to fire 100,000 public servants including 19,000 teachers and other school staff which will create more chaos.”

The Hudak Conservatives would increase class sizes, and cut education assistants, custodians and other school staff, making it difficult to provide the individualized attention students need, according to Holley.

“Education is the key to the future of any community. With smaller class sizes, greater support for students with special needs, and more access to specialist teachers, our children have the best chance to succeed. We don’t need a government that puts cuts and corporate interests first, and students and citizens last.”

ETFO represents 400 teachers in the Algoma District and 76,000 education workers across Ontario.

It recently released Building Better Schools, an education agenda for building a better learning environment for all students at

For further information, contact:
Kelly Holley, ADETFO President: 705-942-3379 or toll-free: 1-877-258-9080


Note: Comments that appear on the site are not the opinion of If you see an abusive post, please click the link beside the post to report it.
KIDDO 6/5/2014 8:36:25 AM Report

Perhaps if teachers were not so greedy in demanding an absurd salary the goverment could afford to keep current staffing levels. The gravy train can only run for so long before it derails. So instead of blaming the goverment for having to make tough decisions on job cuts, take a look in the mirror teachers and ask yourselves what can I do to help my fellow co-workers.
justsomeguy 6/5/2014 8:41:11 AM Report

I urge teachers to remember to put kids first as well.
sportsfan17 6/5/2014 8:49:34 AM Report

How much would you pay them/hour KIDDO? Just curious to hear your solution to end the gravy train.

As far as the Cons proposal to increase class sizes, I'm a bit on the fence with that one. As a teacher, I KNOW the importance of smaller class sizes in the early primary years (JK to Gr. 4). The larger class sizes you have, the more kids you will leave behind in math and literacy. It's a fact. It is extremely difficult to manage the learning differences in children that age when there is 20-25 of them, let alone 30+.

In the upper years though, if you can establish strong math and literacy in the small class sizes at an early age, then it is much more acceptable to have larger class sizes because the children (hopefully) have more independence and are more self-managed.
scottstewy123 6/5/2014 9:16:15 AM Report

You mean put the UNION first
olddog 6/5/2014 9:23:04 AM Report

what needs to be cut in education is the ballooning number of superintendents with in these boards and that money funneled to the class room. student numbers have declined significantly over the last 20 years but the number of superintendents has increased dramatically.
66cherokee 6/5/2014 9:37:14 AM Report

kiddo & old dog, I totally agree with you. We can't afford those high wages for teacher as there are people out there who are just eking a living, and the teachers want more?????? And as for the superintendents, most boards are top heavy with them.
sportsfan17, I went to school when most of my primary classes were 35 and more, and that also included everybody. There were no special classes. We all survived, got a good education. It wasn't as it is now where everybody passes no matter what there grades are.
guestwho 6/5/2014 10:12:25 AM Report

kids first,unless we strike,then kids can piss off,right teachers?
Right Winger 6/5/2014 10:28:17 AM Report

Yes voter kids first.

How about this teachers. Don't pull after school programs for kids when there is a work dispute. That's truly putting kids first.
hockeyman18 6/5/2014 10:46:29 AM Report

You all make me sick. Teacher's VOLUNTEER to do extra curricular. It is not paid so why should they be expected to do volunteer work when the majority go home, sacrifice family time to plan for the next day, grade papers, do report cards, etc.

I am best friends with a teacher who teaches earlier grades and when it was asked what school is for, some responses were as sad as "to come here to eat because I don't get to at home". Now when people bash a PROFESSIONAL because they went to school and got educated it is ridiculous. If it's not teachers it is lawyers, police, nurses, doctors, the steel workers. Everyone complains about other professions.

justsomeguy 6/5/2014 10:58:02 AM Report

Yes, they volunteer at a rate of up to $100k/year, plus many other solid benefits.

Many careers require long hours to be put in outside of regular working hours and we don't get additional compensation for that either. Conferences, training upgrades, overtime. The ESA isn't necessarily friendly to those outside of a collective agreement.
hockeyman18 6/5/2014 11:02:36 AM Report

Overtime is compensated for. Also, the max pay is $94000 with higher level schooling. Teachers starting out is about $40,000 where many jobs that do not require schooling make more than that. My friend's dad works in production at Essar and made over $120,000... under your logic, he should be coaching sports or volunteering to work for free to "justify his wage". Doctors should have to work for two months overseas healing the poor in Africa for free to "justify their salary" because hey, their job is to heal people and make them better. That judge that makes over $300,000 should run some programs for free that help people not stay career criminals because he makes too much.

Doesn't make sense.
justsomeguy 6/5/2014 11:06:10 AM Report

With regard to your statement about report cards, grading, etc.

I ask my children about school every day. They tell me that they have things like independent reading time or independent work time and that's when the teachers are at their desks grading. The report cards I read are obviously liberal with the cut & paste comments with minimal detail. Once a lesson plan has been written it can be used many times over the years. Additionally school is over at 3:30 and teachers are supposed to be at the school until 5pm I believe which gives them another 1.5 hours of time to work in an empty classroom, yet when you look in the parking lot after 3:30, it's empty.

Again there are great hard working teachers and there are those who aren't. I also have a few friends who are teachers and the stories they tell me are of anything but slaving away.
Justin Tetreault 6/5/2014 11:09:04 AM Report

The only reason Bill 115 "caused chaos in schools" is because teacher decided to put kids in the middle and punish them for their fight with the government.
justsomeguy 6/5/2014 11:10:15 AM Report

Hockeyman that's not my logic at all. I stated that the additional duties are part & parcel of their compensation package. It's an historically understood requirement in the teaching career as opposed to the steel working career.

In my careers I've been expected to attention training, seminars, conventions, fundraising, etc.

Your example with doctors makes no sense - the equivalent would be shipping teachers to Africa to teach those children, which is outside the realm of our discussion.
ranny 6/5/2014 11:35:14 AM Report

Not all teachers have high salary wages. Starting teachers are only making $45k/yr. The teachers that are making $80k/yr are the one who been employed for over 20 years. Just because you see someone is making $100k/yr doesn't mean everyone is making that salary.
justsomeguy 6/5/2014 11:50:26 AM Report

Teachers make $94,707 after only 10 years of work. Receive 210 sick days per year (bankable), 100% employer paid benefits, 94% employer paid dental, 100% employer paid group life coverage, min 10%+ pension matching, and that's a generous pension.

The Financial Post wrote an article on teachers' salaries and found that based on the average hours worked and their annual salary the average elementary teacher is actually making in the neighbourhood of $150/hr.

Canadian teachers are the 2nd highest paid in the world despite having shorter school day hours and fewer working days than most other countries.
justsomeguy 6/5/2014 11:52:12 AM Report

That should have read 20 bankable sick days per year, not 210.
northkidd2 6/5/2014 12:23:14 PM Report

Justsomeguy.... Get your facts straight...

1. The bankable sick days were taken away last year. Teachers get 11 sick days a year at 100% salary. (None of which can be accumulated)

2. Teachers are only required to stay 15 minutes after the school day ends.

3. Benefits and pension are contributed into by teachers... Ask to see what deductions are taken off their paycheques. Take home pay is way less than half of the gross salary.

Fact fact and fact
OTHERight 6/5/2014 12:24:31 PM Report

justsomeguy should getcorrectinformation before spewing his jealousy-laden criticisms (so transparent).

There are no bankable sick days, the limit per year is in the 10-12 range (I worked in the mines in the 80's and had 2 sick days monthly, it is 11 years to max the grid but you need various levels of extra study and training to be afforded the 94K. The vast majority work long and hard hours (evenings and weekends, 2-3 weeks of their summer break), attend training and workshops away from home, and spend out of pocket to serve the kids in their charge because there is little money in the system. Education leads public serve professions in how much educators spend out of pocket to supplement lacking resources in the system. As well, they fund raise, plan excursions and trips for their students. They aree not on the clock until 5pm but are usually there beyond that or return in the evening or take work home.

On top of that, we, as parents TRUST the care of our CHILDREN to our educators, who in many cases spend more time with our kids than some parents.


It is a simple relationship for me to recognize. NeoCon thinktanks and individuals will always find someone to target and teachers due to size of their membership are easy targets. Don't believe everything you read.

(I am not a teacher).
Pam60 6/5/2014 12:24:46 PM Report

It's amazing how when they think their jobs are at risk...that they are all of a sudden worried about putting kids first......shouldn't this be something they do all school year long. There are a lot of great teachers out there but some not so great!
justsomeguy 6/5/2014 12:31:30 PM Report

@OTHERight - I have my facts entirely straight, do you?

Ontario Ministry of Finance Public Sector Salary Disclosure 2014:

Globe & Mail as per the OECD:

Article by the Financial Post:

And if you think I'm jealous? Yes I am. I'd love to have that kind of compensation, benefits, pension & time off and I have comparable (and arguably) more training & education. But I didn't choose education because it's not something that I would enjoy.
justsomeguy 6/5/2014 12:35:10 PM Report

And if you think our children are 'well educated' why are our children's testing results plummeting when compared to other cities, provinces and even nations?

Children today can't spell, have horrible grammar, struggle putting a proper sentence together and can barely perform simple math.

School hours are shorter than previous years with more days off than previous years. If it's such a difficult & thankless job then why is there such a long line-up for new teachers and why are so many teachers refusing to retire?

Lostclause 6/5/2014 12:37:58 PM Report

This very same union threw the children they were supposed to put first, into the middle of their squabble with the government. They cut or stopped all extra curricular activities in an effort to thumb their nose at the government.

Yes, teachers are professionals. They go to school and get a designation. They also though, get more paid time off (not including summers)than the vast majority of the workforce in Canada, and as noted above, they can bank the days they don't use. They don't work shift work. They don't have to trade shifts to attend family events and they have every weekend off. They have also benefited from a 35% increase in wages in a 9 year span.

Teachers do a wonderful job. They take pride in their work. They do take time out of their lives to help those children in need. But it's part of any job. If you expect to make gains in your employment, you go that extra mile, you work hard, you do better than the minimum. You take extra training when you can to upgrade or learn new skills. Just because you happen to work with children doesn't make teachers better people, or more deserving than say a bricklayer.

Lostclause 6/5/2014 12:41:15 PM Report

Remove my part about bankable sick days. Updates were posted as I typed.
justsomeguy 6/5/2014 12:56:29 PM Report

As above.
northkidd2 6/5/2014 2:11:38 PM Report


Your rant on less school days, hours in a school day, etc., are all Education Act issues. They are in no way related to collective bargaining.

Again, get your facts straight...

I'm tired of correcting you.

Thank you
justsomeguy 6/5/2014 2:39:55 PM Report

I didn't intend to claim that those were collective agreement items, and in my opinion it's irrelevant. My opinion is that teachers have a pretty good thing going that they don't seem to recognize.

I can count as many weak teachers as good teachers, but there sure aren't many professions or careers out there where one can be compensated that well for that long and not be all that good at their job.
ranny 6/5/2014 2:45:25 PM Report

@justsomeguy you are wrong.

They can no longer bank their sick days and have 11 sick days. Anything after is deducted and then leave.

I've seen teachers spending their own money for supplies and helping kids for extra activities. They don't have to stay after school function... like sports, drama or music. They could be selfish and walk away but they enjoy what they do.

Before you criticize teacher about student's marks. Try pointing your fingers at the parents. It's their job to make sure their kids are doing their home work and studying for the test. They did their job by assisting and giving the students the martial they need to student for a test. They're welcome to ask their teacher for extra help. I've seen teachers staying after school or during lunch to help. Some students rather go home playing video games or Facebook. Parent's should be spending time with their kids to make sure their school works are done or preparing for a test. Is it the teachers job to call all their students everyday at their homes??

As for their salary. Their salary is based on a 10 month pay but spread out in a 12 months pay. Example, if you're getting paid $50,000 for 10 months. They'll gladly spread your salary by 12 months.

If you're jealous or envy about their pay or wages. Why don't you become one? I'm sure creating lesson plans and marking everyday after work seems fun.
You do realized they take their work home?

justsomeguy 6/5/2014 3:00:53 PM Report

@Ranny, in previous posts I've already answered all of your questions.

As for teachers spending their own money - from what I've seen, that's the exception. I get lists every month of what I need to buy & send in to school. Crafts, treats, etc.

As for homework, my children never or extremely rarely have homework. It's such a rare occurrence that I've called the school to check if they do have homework, but it's nearly impossible to get in touch with a teacher after 3:30 so I've talked to the principle and he has confirmed there's no homework.

I've been reading to & with my children since they were born. I've helped them when they've actually had homework and hired a tutor when the teacher didn't have time to help if it was a subject that I didn't know much about.

Like I said previously, some teachers are great & worth the salary, others are a drain on the system.

Teachers most certainly don't create lesson plans every day. Often every few years they need to adjust their lesson plans, but they use plans adapted from TC/Con Ed and use a version of the same plan year after year. Many teachers also have time during the day to grade tests, etc., plus the time after school lets out. Many of us non-teachers also spend our own time after work reviewing & writing reports, budgets, performance reviews, etc. I maintain my opinion that teachers are put on a very high pedestal and not all are worth it. I've had enough good & bad experience with teachers over the years, my opinion is based mostly on direct observation. You're entitled to your opinion why am I not entitled to mine?
ranny 6/5/2014 4:01:52 PM Report

@justsomeguy Then i would start blaming the governments for their cut back. They have this system called... No One Gets Left Behind. They want the education system to dummy down because they feel students are getting to much homework and cut back.

This goes to University and College. By eliminating Grade 13 or OAC, students are now attending post secondary unprepared. I recall my little sister telling me a few years ago... parent's calling their professor and complaining they're being assigned to much homework and the tests are hard. When the government cuts back before they don't want to find the kids and create a revolving door. It will finally hit the kids when they hit the real world.

The grading system. All these testing are a waste of money and try to create standards. Not every kids will learn from a rich class area and will have some learning disability. Every kid will have their own unique way of learning. School will try their best to score good with the Literacy Testing.
justsomeguy 6/5/2014 4:14:09 PM Report

What scares me is that these are the scores achieved with practice/preporatory tests. My kids had literally no homework throughout the year until it came to EQAO, at which point they were finally given homework in the form of practice tests & study guides (sent home with instructions for parents on how to administer the practice tests). It was as if the schools didn't care until the results would be published.
Needler 6/5/2014 4:20:48 PM Report

There are too many teachers and enrollment continues to get smaller and smaller. Couldn't some of the remedy be to get rid of the retired teachers? If you are retired, you are retired! It is time to make room for the new, young, and well educated teachers, of which there are many, all just begging for jobs. The majority of them would be happy to start working at $45,000.00 a year. Why are Boards and Principals allowing these older "has-beens" back in the classroom?
All Is Well 6/5/2014 5:26:29 PM Report

Bill C-115 did not cause chaos in the classroom. Other teacher groups reached agreements with the government. The government was trying to hold the line with costs. Some teacher groups were oblivious of what was happening at the bargaining table. No higher class sizes, no layoffs and only necessary hiring vs. more pay which they were still trying to get, after the fact. Per pupil funding has gone up, introduction of J.K. into the system, teacher assistants, monies into school meals, a much higher graduation rate and some normalcy in the education system are threatened with these teacher groups advocating for the NDP. Funny, the NDP gave you Rae days and tore up your contract. Harris came along and laid off teachers and cut funding. Then along came the Liberal government and put money back into the system by hiring teachers and building new schools. I can see not voting for PC because you may have your job on the line, but the NDP will not form the government. That leaves but one choice. Choose wisely.
OTHERight 6/5/2014 5:28:35 PM Report

Let's be fair. Let's examine your work, salary and benefits and who you are responsible to report to. Pleaee advise. I suspect you won't.

I can point at any occupation - professional or not. I can always find a laggart, one that does not earn their income and are riding on others - IN EVERY OCCUPATION.I don't dismiss all who work in that area with the same brush - not even 50% of them as you do tteachers.

I put this to you. I don't know many occupations where your performance is scrutinized by so many within and outside of the workplace - the teacher is evaluated, judged or responsible to: students, parents, other teachers, support staff, Principals, Superintendents, Directors, outside agencies, education advocacy groups, special needs advocacy groups, regulatory bodies, government officials and the odd think tank that rates schools based on student performance.

This is a very public job...I suspect much more public than yours.

Tell us your occupation and your salary. Who do you report to? What are you responsible for things or people? How many do you supervise? How many do you plan for on a daily basi (you are wrong about lesson planning by the way)?

Let's dissect you and your occupation. Let's talk about your results and whether you are worth the dollars that you are paid. Let's know your are making statements that paint one of every two teachers (according to you) with the same brush. So teachers do not have the anonymity you enjoy.

Who knows. What is obvious is that your remarks are quite unfair when you are not offering yourself up for the same scrutiny. Many may think you are not worth your income or maybe would think you are worth more. Maybe they think you are a laggart as is one of every two are who share your occupation.

I don't think your remarks are fair and only undermine the same system you entrust the health, well-being and education of your children to. I'm surprised you don't home school so you don't have to deal with teachers for whom you seem to have no repect or value.

I like our TEACHERS WELL PAID and WLL RESTED. Simple as that.
justsomeguy 6/5/2014 6:55:05 PM Report

I don't have time for a detailed answer, however, not that it's any of your business, I'm an accounting manager and I currently earn $74,600 per annum and I pay 100% of my group health. I supervise 14 direct reports, work an average of 50-55 hours per week and am subject to constant training, audits, seminars, etc.

Teachers have a very public job because they are funded by the public, and as such should be help to public accountability.
B Boy 6/5/2014 7:04:06 PM Report

In this day & age the implications of well-known & publicized professions are exceedingly clear. If you don't like a profession, the inherent responsibilities or accountabilities, simply choose another one.
roxpin 6/5/2014 9:39:14 PM Report

I will vote conservitive just to see the choas! laugh well they write my pink slip to my public sector job ,and cant wait to get unemployment stoked
Frio 6/5/2014 10:05:49 PM Report

Seeing so many people know how great public service jobs are,in this case teachers, with gold plated pensions, 6 hour days, all weekends,holidays and summers off, never ending raises, paid sick days, slack working conditions, no accountability, union protection, and all the rest, why didn't they personaly get the education, meet any requirements and get hired on the fantasy gravey train and become teachers or get jobs in the public service??? Nobody to blame but the jealous, constantly complaining fool you see behind the face looking back at you in the mirror every day.
ranny 6/7/2014 11:51:45 AM Report

Frio the reason they're paid for the summer is because the school board spread their salary from a 10 month pay to 12 month.

Example $50,000/month for 12 months instead of $50,000/month for 10 months.

Would you rather have the teachers apply for EI in the summer because they were only paid for 10 months?
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