Highlights of the Provincial Executive Council meetings held July 8, Aug. 1–2, 4–6, and 20, 2020, via virtual platform
1. Approved the name of the unified Teacher Welfare and Member Services program areas. Commencing on Sept. 1, 2020, the new structure will be called Teacher Employment Services, with Robert Mazzotta serving as its co-ordinator.
2. Named Sean Brown to the position of associate co-ordinator, collective bargaining, and named Tim Jeffares to the position of associate co-ordinator, discipline, with both positions commencing on Sept. 1, 2020.
3. Approved in principle the Association’s “Priority Areas for Successful and Safe Re-Entry to Alberta School Buildings” document.
4. Approved in principle 13 resolutions for submission to the 2020 Annual Representative Assembly.
5. Addressed emergent resolutions that remained on the order paper when the 2020 Annual Representative Assembly was adjourned. They were referred to Council for disposition.
Highlights of the Provincial Executive Council meeting held Sept. 24–25, 2020, via virtual platform
1. Approved the final form of two electoral ballots for distribution to the membership.
Approved a statement of Association program emphases for 2020/21.
Approved all 2021 teachers’ conventions be held virtually on their assigned dates.
Declared an end to the governance emergency, which applied to all subgroups, to address governance issues created by the COVID-19 pandemic.
5. Notwithstanding any other administrative guidelines, authorized the following directives be observed with respect to the activities of Council, Council committees and Council members until a future time determined by Table Officers Committee based on its ongoing review of the circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic:
a. Meetings of Council and Council committees are to be conducted virtually;
b. Recognizing their potential to be in contact with multiple cohorts of teachers, Council members are expected to attend external congregated activities and events organized by the Association or Association subgroups virtually
c. Where their attendance in-person is necessary given the nature of an activity, a Council member may attend, observing all necessary precautions including, but not limited to, masking, social distancing, food and material hygiene and handwashing.
6. Notwithstanding any other administrative guidelines, policies, framework or constitutional provisions, authorized the following directions be provided to Association subgroups (locals, convention associations, specialist councils, committees other than committees of Council, etc) with respect to their meetings, activities and events until a future time determined by Table Officers Committee based upon its ongoing review of the circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic:
a. Recognizing the potential of subgroup events to bring teachers from multiple cohorts together, the preferred and default option is for subgroup events to be conducted virtually
b. Subgroup activities that might, contrary to the direction provided, take place, partially or entirely, in congregated settings must comply with all orders, regulations and directives of the chief medical officer of health, regional medical officers of health, the province, the municipality or school authority in which they are occurring; furthermore, such activities must comply with the following conditions:
i. in-person attendance must be voluntary; and
ii. provision must be made for individuals who choose to do so to attend virtually (with the expectation that Council members and Association staff will attend virtually).
7. Authorized staff to develop for consideration by Resolutions Committee at its December meeting a draft report and potential recommendations concerning district boundaries and representation.
8. Authorized Resolutions Committee to present for Council’s consideration at its February Council meeting a draft report on district boundaries and representation for submission to the 2021 Annual Representative Assembly.
9. Authorized disbursement of the 2020/21 budget for international co-operation for 12 international goals, including Project Overseas, ATA Dominica IT Project and Canadian Women for Women in Afghanistan.
10. Approved an overexpenditure in the amount of $2,500 from International Assistance Periodic for disbursement to the Education International Solidarity Fund, through the Canadian Teachers’ Federation, in support of teachers, their families and school communities in Lebanon.
11. Authorized staff to engage Decide Campaigns on the development and implementation of a targeted advertising campaign to supplement the “Face of Education” campaign.
12. In accordance with 31(2) of the Teaching Profession Act, approved an extension to the 120-day hearing time period for one outstanding case of alleged unprofessional conduct.
13. Received the report of a hearing committee that found a teacher guilty of one charge of unprofessional conduct for making inappropriate comments containing sexual innuendo to a colleague in the presence of other colleagues. The hearing committee imposed a penalty of a letter of reprimand and a fine of $750.
14. Received the report of a hearing committee that found a teacher guilty of one charge of unprofessional conduct for sending an email to a colleague that contained highly inflammatory, disparaging and denigrating comments about the teacher and included the threat of physical violence. The hearing committee imposed a penalty of a severe letter of reprimand and a fine of $1,500.
15. Received the report of a hearing committee that found a teacher guilty of two charges of unprofessional conduct for removing a student from the student’s home without the permission of the student’s parents and for not co-operating with the investigating officer. The hearing committee imposed a penalty of a letter of reprimand addressing charge one and a letter of severe reprimand and a fine of $1,000 addressing charge two.
16. Received the report of the professional conduct appeal committee that reviewed the decision of a hearing committee of the professional conduct committee (PCC). The appeal committee found the decision made by the PCC hearing committee on guilt and penalty to be reasonable and, as a result, the appeal was denied.
17. Approved two resolutions for submission to the 2021 Annual Representative Assembly resolving that
a. optimal teaching and learning conditions include reasonable limits on class size and complexity, and
b. school and system leaders be members of the bargaining unit.
18. Approved the Fall Professional Development Area Conference and the Spring Professional Development Area Conference be held virtually.
19. Approved the Fall Planning meeting be conducted virtually.
20. Referred to staff for study and report to the October meeting of Council a recommendation that all members of Council be made whole to benefits of pensionable service, effective Jan. 1, 2020.
21. Named field members to field experiences committees; amended the Central Table Bargaining Committee frame of reference; renamed the Pension Committee to the Pension, Benefits and Insurance Committee and amended its frame of reference; established the Bargaining Advisory Committee and approved its membership and frame of reference; amended administrative guidelines pertaining to committee appointment processes; disbanded the Well-Being of Children and Youth Committee and the Teacher Welfare Services Committee, with thanks, retroactive to June 30, 2020; and named a field member to represent the Association on the Alberta Education French Language Arts 30 Diploma Examinations Committee. ❚