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Teacher Newsmagazine Volume 17, Number 1, September 2004

BCTF public campaign launched

The 2004 BCTF Annual General Meeting decided to commit $2 million to a public campaign to ensure that public education is a vote-determining issue in the May 2005 election. Focus-group testing and polling conducted since January 2004 confirms that the public is aware and concerned about the direction of public education under the B.C. Liberals. The public identified its concerns as fewer teachers, larger classes, loss of specialist teachers such as librarians and counsellors, and less support for students with special needs. There were also concerns about the impact of school closures on communities and students who are now required to spend more time on busses.

Parents and members of the public are very supportive of teachers and expect teachers to keep them informed about the state of our schools. For more information on public opinion please see "Good news for B.C.’s teachers," page 3 of this issue.

The first public phase of the campaign will be launched September 27 with billboards around the province. The message is:

2,500 fewer teachers,

113 schools closed

Our students. Your kids.

Worth speaking out for.

Members of the public in focus groups appreciated the factual information and were surprised at the loss of 2,500 teachers and the closure of 113 schools.

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