Date: May 10, 2021
(Halifax, NS) After two years of pandemic learning, the HRCE should be augmenting student support wherever possible, not making cuts to teaching positions at specific schools,” says NSTU President Paul Wozney.
Wozney made the comments in light of growing anxiety that some schools could see a significant reduction in teaching positions for the upcoming year. Metro area high schools are expected to be especially hard hit because of the elimination of Unassigned Instructional Time (UIT), used to support individual student and school safety needs.
“Given what they’ve experienced the past two years, students deserve more extra academic help; more access to sports, music and extra-curricular activities; and added supervision to ensure safety protocols are being followed,” says Wozney. “Unfortunately, at many schools around Halifax there are going to be fewer teachers to provide this support which can only negatively impact student achievement.”
He adds, “The HRCE is quick to promote good news, but when it comes to cuts, they tend to happen in secret without any consultation with parents or School Advisory Committees (SACs). Communities that are about to receive cuts to their schools deserve to be notified so they have an opportunity to respond appropriately. Parents should not be kept in the dark about changes, both good and bad, that could impact their children.”
Wozney is urging parents and community members to write to HRCE Executive Director Elwin LeRoux and Halifax areas MLAs and urge them to reverse any local cuts for the upcoming year.
“Whenever decisions are made that impact students, there needs to be accountability and transparency. Right not that’s just not the case,” says Wozney.