Ontario’s students and educators are worth investing in
Publish date: Saturday, August 08, 2020 presidentsMessage
Seven cents extra simply isn’t enough to keep students and educators safe
Over the past week or so we’ve seen the release of plans for a return to school in September—plans many parents and teachers have spent the summer concerned over. Every Ontario school board is expected to submit individual plans, but schools will be expected to open full time with masks and physical distancing measures.
The number of students in Ontario classrooms was a source of concern long before we had an inkling of the current global pandemic. Based on other countries’ experiences, we know students can safely return to the classroom—but it requires fewer students per class. With just seven extra cents in funding per student per day, the government is undermining parents’ faith in Ontario’s ability to deliver quality public education, sparking talks amongst concerned parents of private schools and pods.
AMAPCEO – Ontario’s Professional Employees stand in solidarity with our education colleagues and with parents who are saying once-in-a-lifetime funding is required to get education back to its feet.
A high-quality public education system makes for a great equalizer. It can connect students from across spectrums of culture and wealth to programs and people with a focus on helping Ontario’s young people reach their highest level of achievement. For this to work, schools need adequate funding to ensure the very environment students are learning in is safe.
We know that Ontario can deliver globally-recognized public education; AMAPCEO members in the Ministry of Education work to ensure it. Investing in the safety of students is an investment in both our province’s short-term recovery and economic future for generations to come.
Teachers need workplaces with adequate precautions to protect themselves and their families from the virus. Working parents need to know their children are in good hands. Students deserve the equalizing power of a publicly-funded education system with a plan to reduce the spread.
With no greater lynchpin to society’s overall recovery than the resumption of our education system, it’s imperative the government financially support it to the level necessary to make the re-introduction successful. Without that success, our economy and our way of life will continue to be lost to us. The key ingredient in a successful return to school is the health of students and educators. We ask the government to make the necessary investment into their safety; – its not just what our education system needs, its what our economy and livelihoods need to recover.
President & CEO
More about AMAPCEO and our Members: Established in 1992, AMAPCEO is a bargaining agent that represents 14,000 professional and supervisory public servants, most of whom work directly for the Government of Ontario in every ministry and in a number of agencies, boards and commissions; in 130 communities throughout Ontario and in 12 cities outside Canada. We also represent employees outside the Ontario Public Service in: the Financial Services Regulatory Authority of Ontario; Health Quality Ontario; the Ontario Arts Council; Public Health Ontario; the Waypoint Mental Health Centre in Penetanguishene; and in the former Offices of the Ontario Child Advocate and the French Language Services Commissioner (now part of the Ontario Ombudsman).