Provincial Snapshot: September K-12 Restart
the government first announced their K-12 restart plan on July 29, the BC
Teachers’ Federation (BCTF) expressed significant concerns that the plan needed
more work. Despite extensive work by the Federation’s leadership and 25
classroom teachers on the government’s steering committee and working groups,
some of teacher’s biggest concerns have yet to be addressed.
the province, most teachers and students are now back in classrooms. To
understand their experiences, and to continue to advocate for the health and
safety measures necessary to keep our school communities safe, the BCTF
conducted a quick poll of members. The poll was open from September 17 to 21
and were received from all but two school districts. The poll gathered 8,952
responses, representing classroom teachers (70%), specialist teachers (21%),
teachers teaching on call (5%) and other teaching positions.
Health and safety measures
in schools are inadequate
of respondents have returned to in-person instruction since September 8, 2020. Of
these, only 7% report that health and safety measures at their work site are
Solid hybrid and remote
options require appropriate accommodations
BCTF has been demanding hybrid and remote options in every school district to
help reduce class sizes and school density, as well as to protect students and
staff members, or their families, who are more vulnerable because of existing
health concerns. However, among the quick poll respondents who reported that
they have not returned to in-person instruction, only 6% reported receiving
an accommodation to work from home.
those who have not received an accommodation and have not
returned to in-person instruction: 60% are teachers teaching on call; 21% are
using sick leave; 13% are on an unpaid leave; 6% are on a different paid leave.
hybrid and remote options should engage teachers teaching on call, as well as
teachers who need accommodations for health reasons, to ensure that all
students stay safe and remain connected to their school.