Sunday, 19 August 2018

NSTU president Paul Wozney: “As August ticks towards September, Nova Scotians would be wise to remember that 2018-2019 is yet another year of system-wide uncertainty in public schools where the truly vulnerable are not only students and teachers. For the first time, with no end in sight, administrators are squarely in the crosshairs of ill-planned change that put them, schools and quality of education at risk.”

Educator Molly Hurd tackles the current threats to art education in Nova Scotia. “By reducing arts education, we are once again widening the gap between those who already have and those who have not. Rich parents will always be able to provide private lessons and classes for their children. Schools in wealthy neighbourhoods will always be able to fund-raise for extra artistic opportunities.  Public education, to be truly equitable, needs to provide good arts education for all.”

The Canadian Federation of Students-Nova Scotia (CFS- NS) has been informed that they are not invited to the first meeting the government’s newly reinstated provincial Sexual Violence Prevention Committee to address sexual assault on university campuses. This decision comes as continued retaliation by the Minister of Labour and Advanced Education, Labi Kousoulis, against the CFS-NS, after an op-ed was published in The Coast on March 15 that was critical of the Liberal government’s decision to vote down campus sexual violence legislation.

Educator Molly Hurd in the second of a multi-part series on Bill 72 and the blessings and pitfalls of standardized testing. Pointing at Britain’s recent experience she argue that one of the consequences of an increased reliance on standardized tests may well be more privatization of education. ” The passage of Bill 72 has set us on the road to adopting a neoliberal agenda for education which has been in think tank AIMS’ sights for years, and has been implemented in countries all around the world.”

The Department of Education will no longer meet with CFS-NS representatives because it didn’t like a Coast op-ed written by its Chairperson, Aidan McNally. The editorial was critical of the government’s unwillingness to deal with sexual violence on campus. “It is our responsibility to hold elected governments accountable to students, not to placate them. If we are doing the latter, we are not serving our members’ interests. The decision of this government to shut students out of representative spaces due to criticism is unacceptable,” writes the CFS-NS provincial executive committee in an open letter.

A video entiltled Africentric Math Cohort isn’t really clickbait, and I am not sure why I clicked it. But I am glad I did. We’ve heard a lot lately about the politics of education, and most of it pretty depressing really. It’s time for a little reminder of some of the great work happening at our schools right now.