Advocacy Idea


I just don’t know what to do anymore.
Has the pan-Canadian framework got you down again? Actually, yes.
Dave, I have colleagues on leave, colleagues who have quit or are on the
verge of quitting. In some cases I honestly believe that employment
standards are being violated. Some trainers are overstepping their coaching
roles. What have you tried so far? We’ve tried calling and meeting with our
Members of Parliament and Provincial Parliament. I don’t know how much they
can do. One guy has a petition with 600 signatures. We’ve tried talking to
someone pretty high up within the ministry. He’s…well…pretty useless. It’s
almost impossible for us to speak out. Some of my colleagues are being
intimidated. They are fearful of reprisal. One teacher I know stopped being asked
to supply teach because of her advocacy. I see. Whenever I try to dialogue with
one of the cheerleaders, we just end up going in circles misunderstanding one
another. How does that happen? They usually steer the conversation
toward the pedagogical merits of certain components of the model. I think you’ve
just identified the problem. What do you mean? You can’t allow them to conflate two issues. Educational research is not like laboratory research. It involves too
many variables. You can’t expect to resolve anything going at it from that
angle; it would take decades. If you let them take you down that rabbit hole,
they will exhaust you. Oh, I think I see where you were going with this. We have
to stop the hijacking of the conversation. We must bring them back every time to the crucial point–that of demoralisation, issues of right and wrong,
rights violations! The defenders say that the inventors are not to blame for the
way schools have misinterpreted the guidelines. They seem to be washing their
hands of instances of abuse of power in the name of enforcement. But what can we do about the total lack of transparency and accountability? Who will ever step
forward and admit that the project was poorly designed and is being punitively
implemented. Someone needs to accept responsibility for imposing requirements that cannot be met on paid time and even for the fact that at agencies where teachers have been
given more paid prep time, this has come out of students’ learning time. So? You
can’t just start a boulder in motion and then walk away even as it rolls off
track taking no responsibility for the collateral damage. That’s just wrong.
Surely there is someone on your side. Well, some unions are trying, but many of
us are not in a union. There are good administrators trying their best to push
back, but they can only go so far without risking losing their funding. Where does
the buck stop? All we have is the faceless funder. It’s an impossible
situation. Dave, we feel powerless. Powerless? It sounds like you need an
ombudsman.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *