Canadian Union of Public Employees

Edmonton Public Schools Support Staff

P: (780) 455 1435 | F: (780) 452 1462 | E: cupe3550@telus.net

Stuff a Purse Campaign a huge success!!

THANK YOU to everyone that donated to our Stuff a Purse Campaign!! Wow, look through the photos at the 317 bags & purses, toiletries, feminine hygiene products, shampoo, conditioner, soap, body wash, lotion, hand gel, tissue, socks, underwear, and many, many more donations. CUPE 3550 members, YOU REALLY CAME THROUGH! You made this campaign a success! Now we need to distribute these awesome stuffed bags at the Labour Day BBQ. CUPE 3550 will have a tent with tables set up with all the items, we need volunteers to put smiles on the faces of the recipients. If you can help, even for a short time please contact cupe3550@telus.net and get your name on the list. 

This is a wonderful family event, bring the family down to enjoy all the fun and have a BBQ lunch. The event is on September 2, 2019 at Giovanni Caboto Park 95 Street and 109 Avenue  11:30 – 3:30 pm.

Please see the poster attached and if you have more donations, please drop them off at the CUPE 3550 Union office at 14207 – 115 Avenue. We are open M-F 8:30-5:00 pm.

EDLC Labour Day BBQ poster 2019

 

Volunteer on September 2, 2019 at the Labour Day BBQ

Please join CUPE 3550 at the EDLC Labour Day BBQ on September 2, 2019 and help to hand out the bags, purses, toothbrushes, toothpaste, toiletries, tissue, socks, underwear, and so many other donations. A great time for families too!

Please click on the link below

EDLC Labour Day BBQ poster 2019

CUPE 3550 Office is open!

Did you know that the CUPE Local 3550 Union office is open during the summer! Would you like to fill out a membership application, be sworn in, pick up your membership card?

Come on by for a coffee and conversation, if you have any questions or would just like to meet your full time officers drop by, we would love to see you!

Please call prior to coming to the office to ensure an officer is here to help you.

14207 – 115 Avenue

780-455-1435

Last Day of School

CUPE 3550 would like to wish all Edmonton Public School Support Staff a wonderful summer. We look forward to seeing you in the fall rested and ready to take on a new year!

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Bill 8 will make schools less safe for students

 

Research shows LGBTQ kids among most vulnerable, Kristopher Wells says.

There has been heated public debate and rhetoric concerning the UCP government’s proposed changes to the Education Act with the recent introduction of Bill 8. The new minister of education continually proffers how Bill 8 will provide the strongest legislative protections for GSAs in Canada, while other political parties, educators, and students argue that Bill 8 represents a significant rollback on important protections and supports for both LGBTQ students and teachers.

Bill 8 removes the requirement that principals immediately grant a student’s request to start a GSA and appoint a staff member, in a timely fashion, to supervise the group. Bill 8 also no longer guarantees that students will have the right to call their clubs a “gay-straight alliance” or “queer-straight alliance” without obstruction or undue influence, and removes written clarifications protecting the disclosure of GSA membership.

Bill 8 also eliminates the requirement that all schools must publicly post policies which conform to Alberta’s human rights legislation and include written protections for both students and teachers on the grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity.

Is Bill 8 a rollback on LGBTQ inclusion and progress in schools? Was Bill 24 an overreach by the previous NDP government? With so much spin, hyperbole, and misinformation being circulated it’s hard to know what is truth, what is fiction, and what is political theatre.

So what does the scientific research literature have to say about the issue of GSAs?

Over 20 years of peer-reviewed research indicates that LGBTQ youth are among the most vulnerable groups of students in schools today, with higher rates of substance use, smoking rates, eating disorders, homelessness, depression, self-harm, and suicidality when compared to their heterosexual peers.

These risk factors are not because of who LGBTQ are or how they identify. They are the compounding product of discrimination, harassment, and prejudice, which all contribute to the development of unsafe school environments that impact the mental and physical health, safety, and well-being of sexual and gender-minority youth. The Public Health Agency of Canada has noted that schools are a critical site for targeted interventions to help reduce these risks by supporting the development of protective factors, inclusive policies, and evidence-informed programs designed to help build resilience, increase safety, and improve mental health.

Research demonstrates that GSAs are an important intervention that not only reduces risk and helps to build resilience, but can also save over $183,000 in future student-related health-care costs that result when discrimination and prejudice are allowed to flourish in schools.

Research shows that GSAs are a vital public-health intervention, which not only creates safer school climates for lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) youth, but also for heterosexual youth. One recent study from the University of British Columbia, which included over 39,000 students in Grades 7-12, found that the longer a school had a GSA, the greater its protective power was for all students. The length of time and presence of a GSA is positively related to increased feelings of school safety. This finding lends support to not only the importance of GSAs, but also to their long-term, cumulative, and positive impact on school climates and student safety.

Research indicates that GSAs make schools safer, so why would any government seek to limit, weaken, or reduce their implementation?

Bill 8 does exactly the opposite of what the UCP proclaims it will do. If Bill 8 is passed, schools will become less safe, policies more vague and ineffective, and both LGBTQ and heterosexual students will suffer.

GSAs do not just change lives, they save them. Government legislation should at the very minimum seek to do no harm. Bill 8 will remove important protections and increase risk impacting the health and well-being of all students. It is legislation that is not supported by research or evidence. Instead, it appears to be crafted out of wilful ignorance, ideological dogma, and wanton prejudice.

Kristopher Wells is a newly appointed Canada Research Chair for the Public Understanding of Sexual and Gender Minority Youth. He is an associate professor in the Faculty of Health and Community Studies, MacEwan University, and serves as the co-editor of the International Journal of LGBT Youth.

Edmonton Journal June 27, 2019

Union office is open during July and August

Did you know that the CUPE Local 3550 Union office is open during the summer! Would you like to fill out a membership application, be sworn in, pick up your membership card?

Come on by for a coffee and conversation, if you have any questions or would just like to meet your full time officers drop by, we would love to see you!

Please call prior to coming to the office to ensure an officer is here to help you.

14207 – 115 Avenue

780-455-1435

NDP targets education minister over school budgets

Opposition Leader Rachel Notley is calling on the education minister to pull up her socks or be replaced, claiming she has failed to provide school boards with adequate information to plan their budgets.

Unsure of how much money they have to work with during the next year, school boards across Alberta have been approving budgets based on assumptions — not all of which are consistent.

Teachers with the Calgary Board of Education are warning that Alberta’s largest school district will have 220 fewer teachers next year as it grows by 1,800 students, while Edmonton Public Schools is trimming some non-teaching professionals to balance its budget.

Education Minister Adriana LaGrange said Wednesday she told school boards the new government is “keeping the system whole” until it introduces a provincial budget later this fall.

Notley countered that boards are scrambling because LaGrange has neglected to provide them with balance sheets projecting how much money they can expect to receive next year.

Show me the money

The practice of posting political staffer contracts online hasn’t yet been embraced by the UCP, but they say they’re on their way.

The page that usually displays contracts on Wednesday read, “Due to the government transition, contracts of Premier and Minister’s office staff are not available at this time.”

Christine Myatt with the premier’s office said staff are still being hired. Once that process is complete, she said, her government will focus on posting contracts online.

Edmonton Journal June 27, 2019

A Huge Thank you to Fraser School

Thank you Fraser School for your donations toward our Stuff a Purse campaign!!

Public schools budget focuses on adding more teachers

 

 

Edmonton Journal June 26, 2019

Edmonton Public Schools will see a jump in the number of teachers and school support staff to educate the more than 3,200 students expected to enrol next fall.

Although the board’s $1.216-billion budget, approved Tuesday, predicts a net gain of 134 teaching positions by September, 50 shortterm maintenance worker jobs will end and as many as nine other professional positions will be gone.

Uncertainty about how much funding school boards will receive in the delayed fall provincial budget has prompted Edmonton public to put off plans to invest in software, spruce up school entrances and replace carpets.

Trustee Bridget Stirling said crafting a billion-dollar budget based on best guesses from government messages feels “terribly unstable,” and keeps her up at night.

“I find myself today extremely nervous, anxious, pessimistic,” Stirling said at the board’s Tuesday meeting. “I’m very worried about what this fall could look like.”

The board agreed to pull $4.9 million out of reserves to balance its 2019-20 budget.

Almost half of its deficit is a shortfall in funding for student transportation — even though bus fees are going up by five per cent in September.

The district expects to spend about 1.4 per cent more than it budgeted in the 2018-19 school year.

The budget assumes the new government will not continue the NDP’s classroom improvement fund (CIF), which was introduced in 2017 to better working conditions for Alberta teachers.

Although the government’s commitment to fund enrolment growth would give Edmonton public an estimated $31.3 million more to work with next year, the books will take a $10.9-million hit if government does not continue the CIF.

Trustee Trisha Estabrooks said the trajectory of the CIF should be a lesson to the board that some funds come and go and cannot be relied upon.

With more kids to educate, school principals are funnelling money into teachers, meaning some workers, like mental health therapists, may not return next year.

“The reality is, with the loss of things like the classroom improvement fund, there are fewer dollars and it will impact services and supports in our schools,” Supt. Darrel Robertson said Tuesday. “There’s no sugarcoating that.”

The government delayed the provincial budget until fall, to allow a blue-ribbon panel to report back on the state of provincial government spending.

If the school district’s provincial budget assumptions are wrong, it could be in the awkward position of removing services and programs mid-year next year, Robertson said, “which is incredibly disruptive and not good for student learning.”

The budget assumes a provincial school nutrition program introduced by the NDP will continue next school year. Edmonton public receives $1.2 million yearly to help feed kids attending school in some low-income neighbourhoods.

Edmonton public’s budget documents said the district is the fastest-growing in Alberta. Planners expect the student body to grow by 3.2 per cent next year, bringing enrolment to 105,127.

The most profound growth is expected in kindergarten and PK, and junior high and high school grades.