Down but not defeated

I would address this to the Wynne Government but more than ever, I know they are not listening.

I would address this to the media, but I fear they are not listening.

I had some optimism the other day, optimism that maybe the world of education would be productive and going forward in negotiations. That may still be the case.

But today I learned that the new president and CEO of Ontario Generation will not have his salary capped. It will be $1.55 million. I am so utterly defeated by this fact.

How can my government sit and negate and berate and denigrate people who work in education and claim that we are money hungry and putting forth our agenda on the backs of children while they are letting the rich get richer? This government is pushing for classrooms that will require a shoehorn to jam more children in, but has no problem allowing ridiculous salaries for public executives.

I am angry and frustrated and, well, sadly, not surprised. I keep thinking back to my sense of cautious optimism when Wynne took office – I thought things could not get worse than the previous premier (what was his name again???).

I was wrong and that makes me sad. I cannot believe that we are not only back at the bargaining table fighting to hold on to the decimated contract items that we do have, plus fighting tooth and nail for our students to have productive and reasonable learning conditions but that we are having to justify ourselves to a public that doesn’t seem to give any mind to ridiculous salaries of other public employees.

Seriously. What is wrong with this picture?

$1.55 million for CEOs versus $30,000 for teaching assistants/DECEs……who is not showing fiscal restraint Kathleen Wynne?

That’d be you, not me.

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9 Replies to “Down but not defeated”

  1. Paula, I understand and share the frustration on which your post is based. There is an ongoing issue here that becomes particularly heightened in these times of bargaining.

    I’m not sure what the solution is—in reality, it’s probably going to take a lot of different solutions and ideas to get the proper levels of funding for the type of education system that we want in the 21st century.

    But, I would not assume that nobody is listening. More than ever before, we have ways to ensure that our voices are heard—our individual voices and our collective voices. Writing pieces like this is one answer and, if more of us took to the blogosphere, that would help. Most of our leaders use social media and I can’t imagine them not using it to gauge their public image.

    I think that we need to keep up the pressure on our professional associations, on our school districts and on our political representatives. I think that we need to continue to tell a compelling story in our own voices. I think that we need to form alliances and partnerships with other concerned educators, members of the public and politicians. And we need to make all of this very public!

    It’s a lot of work, but so is the what we do on a daily basis in our schools and classrooms.

    Let’s not lose heart!

  2. And I do tube feeding, washroom duties, feeding, swimming, physiotherapy and sometimes unfortunately I have to do restraining for the behavioral students, so it’s definitely not an easy job.

    1. Your situation highlights the point of the frustration felt by many within education – the most vulnerable students need to be appreciated and recognized – as well as supported and educated by people who are also appreciated and recognized for the value they bring to the education system and our just and fair society.

      1. Iam Educational Assistant working, a so called “full-time” 6 hour a day job, $27,900 a year. Along with the low income, every year I have to pay another $600.00 to $900.00 in income taxes back to gov. Over and above what I already pay off my pay for taxes.
        Then we are off for 2 wonderful months in summer, with even less pay. Having to apply for EI and waiting 4 weeks, if not more to receive it. Then try to get a pt job for 2 months. No one will hire you. Also if you happen to work a few hours EI deducts dollar for dollar 😦 how fair is that.

  3. Well said! Now if we can only say that a little louder so that all may hear and understand. Educational assistance are overlooked when it comes to wages and benefits!!

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