Adapted from https://www.facebook.com/BCTeachersFederation
BCTF President Jim Iker, along with representatives of all the education partner groups, participated in a news conference in Victoria with Education Minister Mike Bernier to announce a collaborative plan for curriculum change implementation. The BCTF has been advocating for the time and resources needed to ensure teachers are well supported as the new curriculum is implemented.
Following several weeks of frank and collaborative conversations with senior staff of the Ministry of Education, the Federation was able to reach agreement on government investment of time and money into a curriculum implementation plan that involves teachers and locals in a meaningful way. Details of the announcement include:
• Two days of in-service this year, and two days over each of the next two years
• Collaboration between BCTF and Ministry to create framework for in-service
• $900,000 to release 2,000 teachers to plan the implementation days in their locals
• $100,000 to enable rural teachers to travel to in-service sessions
These in-service days are in addition to the existing professional development days. This announcement is an important first step in successfully rolling out the new curriculum, as teachers will get the time they need to meet, collaborate, and incorporate the changes into their professional practice.
One fundamental change in the new curriculum worth highlighting is that for many years, the BCTF has been strongly urging the inclusion of Aboriginal content and perspectives across all grade levels in BC’s curriculum. The BCTF is pleased that the BC government now agrees and has taken that to heart.
The BCTF once again extends its thanks to the more than 100 members who served on the redesign teams. Their deep expertise and hard work have resulted in creative and progressive curricular change that will benefit teachers and students in classrooms province-wide.
Going forward, the BCTF will continue to advocate for more funding to improve teachers' working conditions and students’ learning conditions. As well, the BCTF will be push for additional funding and new classroom resources to support implementation of the revised curriculum.
The Vancouver International Film Festival is starting this week. A variety of films are available in several languages, and they have an educational screenings program, too. These make great field trips, so bookmark the dates for future years, or sign up for notifications via the VIFF website. Many of these films eventually become available for a small fee through websites such as Vimeo, so if you see one you'd love to share with your students, but you can't physically attend the festival, don't despair! Group ticket sales info is here. VIFF is also seeking teacher feedback, and offers free tickets in thanks.
La Joie de lire au Vancouver Writers Festival
20 octobre 13 h à 14 h 30
DES ALBUMS ILLUSTRÉS À LA BANDE DESSINÉE
ÉDITH BOURGET, PAUL ROUX
STUDIO 1398 Lien: https://www.writersfest.bc.ca/2015/events/7-des-albums-illustr%C3%A9s-%C3%A0-la-bande-dessin%C3%A9e
Paul Roux et Édith Bourget vous feront voyager dans un univers d'aventure et de rêve. L'artiste effervescente, Mme Bourget nous fait découvrir son album illustré Rouge Tomate dans lequel Tom sait comment transformer le quotidien en aventure. M. Roux, bédéiste talentueux, nous présentera Pas de cadeaux pour les héros! - une aventure palpitante, où se mêlent des élans d'amitié, un don de clairvoyance et un clin d'oeil d'œil aux petites passions du quotidien
Pour les élèves de la troisième à la septième année.
22 octobre 10h à 11h15
L'HEURE EST À LA BANDE DESSINÉE
Paul Roux est l'auteur du petit roman humoristique Le détestable cousin, qui raconte l'histoire d'Ernest qui en a assez d'être toujours puni à la place de son cousin! Mathis est en effet un expert en mauvais coups. Il est même considéré comme un ange, alors que c'est un petit démon. Comment faire pour piéger cet imposteur et révéler son vrai visage?
Pour les élèves de la troisième à la septième année.
22 octobre 13h à 14h15
ON CRAQUE POUR MÉLANIE WATT! (moins de 50 tickets restants!)
Tout au long de son parcours, Mélanie Watt a inventé une foule de personnages, aussi colorés les uns que les autres et est célèbre pour avoir mis en vedette Frisson l'écureuil et Chester. Qu'elle aborde le thème de l'amitié, de l'égocentrisme ou de la vente sous pression, ses albums débordent d'humour, d'ironie et de charme, et laissent place à l'interprétation et à la réflexion. Dans tous ses livres, elle s'inspire de son enfance pour créer et avoue qu'il y a un peu d'elle-même dans chacun de ses personnages. Mme Watt viendra nous dévoiler son tout nouveau livre, La Mouche dans l'aspirateur, histoire émouvante remplie de suspens et d'humour.
Pour les élèves de la troisième à la septième année. Website, Twitter, Facebook
Curriculum change update
As we begin the 2015–16 school year, it’s important that teachers across the province are aware of the curricular changes currently underway in BC, both the positive aspects and the outstanding concerns.
A collaborative process
Since 2013, teachers and Ministry of Education staff have been revising the current curriculum. Teams of teachers appointed by the BCTF, the Federation of Independent Schools, and the First Nations Schools Association have worked collaboratively, with Ministry staff facilitating, to update the K–9 curriculum. Work on the first drafts of new Grades 10–12 curricula are expected by the end of August.
Revisions aim to simplify and deepen curriculum
In general, the revisions are intended to make the curricula more manageable for teachers, and to provide more opportunities for teachers and students to focus on particular topics of interest in their schools and communities. The learning outcomes in several subject areas have been reduced, thus providing more time and flexibility to explore topics in depth.
Currently there are 11 curricular areas and the new Core Competencies posted on the Ministry’s Transforming Curriculum and Assessment web page. They are:
· English Language Arts
· Social Studies
· Physical and Health Education
· Français langue seconde-immersion
· Français langue première
· Core French
· Career Education
· Applied Design, Skills, and Technology
· Core Competencies
Use of new curriculum is voluntary this year
Teachers and school districts should have received information from the Ministry emphasizing the voluntary, exploratory nature of the draft curriculum for the 2015–16 year. If you wish, you are free to explore the new curriculum, but no one is required to use it this school year and no one should feel pressured to do so. The Ministry will be communicating this message to superintendents as well, so there should be no confusion about this issue. As with all other changes in our day-to-day working lives, teachers are encouraged to use school-based union meetings and staff committee meetings to discuss the issues arising from these significant curricular changes.
Aboriginal content interwoven
The BCTF strongly supports inclusion of Aboriginal content and understandings across the curriculum. This long-overdue development builds upon work the Federation has already done in supporting employment equity, enhancement agreements, and changes to teacher training programs. Following on the landmark Truth and Reconciliation Commission report, now is an important time to focus on education for reconciliation.
Implementation funding still needed
The BCTF continues to advocate for sufficient implementation funding to support the draft curriculum. Any funding committed to date falls far short of what we know is required to make implementation successful. The Federation will use every opportunity to push for increased implementation funding, including in our next meeting with the new Minister of Education, Mike Bernier. BCTF reps will emphasize the important distinction between implementation funding and teachers’ autonomous use of professional development funding.
The process of education change in BC is multifaceted and complex. Some changes are positive, but many ongoing concerns and unanswered questions remain. Support for special education is one key area of concern. Many teachers have heard that the current special education categories, and the funding that flows from them, will be eliminated. A decategorized model for special education raises disturbing issues about how the needs of these students will be met.
In addition, there is a lack of clarity about the scope of changes contemplated for students in the senior secondary grades. Teachers are worried that the main objective is to fast track students into apprenticeships or the work force in order to further reduce education expenditures. To learn more about the Ministry’s proposed directions, see Graduation Years Curriculum: Proposed Directions.
In BC, as in countries around the globe, teachers and their unions are deeply concerned about the increasing pressures towards privatization and commercialization of public education. Members are encouraged to be aware of these ongoing intrusions into the public good in education. We need to continue promoting the importance and values of public education as outlined in the Charter for Public Education.
Dealing with questions from parents
If parents of your students come to you with questions about curriculum change, it’s a good idea to direct them to district administrators or the Ministry itself for information. Teachers should feel free to be straightforward with parents in expressing their concerns. As well, you may want to explain that for curriculum change to be successful, resources and support are required—including support for students with special needs.
The BCTF will keep you informed on an ongoing basis as the process of curriculum change unfolds. Watch for webinars, Provincial Specialist Associations’ activities and other supports. Additionally, you may contact your local executive with any questions about the draft curriculum.
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