Highlights of the Provincial Executive Council meeting held June 15–16, 2023, Barnett House, Edmonton.
- Adopted the following Human Rights Statement with respect to all Association meetings, events, activities and operations:
As an organization that promotes and is committed to respecting human rights and ensuring a safe, secure and healthy environment for all, the Alberta Teachers’ Association (ATA) works to ensure that all present at or participating in ATA programs and events are protected from violence and harassment.
All ATA members are therefore expected to promote and defend the fundamental human rights of everyone engaged in ATA programs, activities or other ATA work. ATA members are expected to treat one another with fairness, respect and dignity and to uphold the highest standards of professionalism, accountability, competence and integrity as representatives of the provincial Association as well as their respective locals and subgroups.
Furthermore, ATA members are obliged to act to prevent violence and harassment wherever possible and report to the appropriate person in authority any suspected breaches of this statement that come to their attention.
- Authorized that the ATA Human Rights Statement be read aloud and/or distributed electronically and/or provided in print at the outset of all Association meetings, events and activities and that an appropriate person in authority to receive related complaints be identified.
- Authorized the president of the ATA or their designate to warn, reprimand and/or remove from a provincial meeting, event, activity or representative role any participant whom the president or designate reasonably believes to be in breach of the ATA Human Rights Statement.
- Authorized the president of a local or subgroup of the ATA or their designate to warn, reprimand and/or remove from a meeting, event, activity or representative role any participant whom the local or subgroup president or their designate reasonably believes to be in breach of the ATA Human Rights Statement.
- Authorized staff to develop for consideration of Provincial Executive Council any additions or amendments to administrative guidelines, bylaws and/or local and subgroup constitutions necessary to give force and effect to the ATA Human Rights Statement.
- Approved that the Association will adopt, develop or acquire trauma-informed practice for Provincial Executive Council and all Association staff to use in response to a member disclosing that they have experienced some form of physical, sexual or verbal assault and provide annual training to ensure the practice can be expressed in the most engaging and supportive manner.
- Appointed Dr Elissa Corsi to succeed Dr Joni Turville as Associate Executive Secretary.
- Approved in principle moving forward four electoral ballots proposed by locals. The finalized ballots, along with a statement of PEC’s position on each, will be prepared and distributed to locals before the end of September.
- Approved the frame of reference for the Committee to Review Summer Conference.
- Approved in principle that the Association host the CTF/FCE Women’s Symposium in the spring of 2025.
- Approved the guidelines and considerations for implementation of an ARA resolution that authorized the Association to cover the cost of substitute teachers for teachers who took leave to fight the Alberta wildfires in May and June 2023, to a maximum of $50,000 and upon application to the Association.
- Authorized a section be added to the Local President Seminar to talk about engagement for Council of School Representatives.
- Approved language be added to all local constitutions to the effect that one of the roles of the school representative is to support and facilitate communication for central and local bargaining.
- Approved that all Central Table Bargaining Committee members be highlighted to ensure local members know and have confidence in who is bargaining on their behalf.
- Authorized a more transparent or open communication style when reporting to members on bargaining, where appropriate.
- Authorized creation of a “Bargaining 101 Education Program” to aid members and local leaders to better understand the bargaining processes and steps.
- Authorized staff to conduct a review of the Alberta School Learning Commons Council and report back to Council on or before its June 2024 meeting.
- Received the report of a hearing committee that found a teacher guilty of one charge of unprofessional conduct for engaging in inappropriate online communications with a student. The hearing committee imposed the penalty of a letter of severe reprimand, a fine of $1,500, a declaration that the teacher is ineligible for membership in the Association, and a recommendation to the minister of education to cancel the teacher’s teaching certificate.
- Received the report of a hearing committee that found a teacher guilty of four charges of unprofessional conduct for communicating online with a person who acted as a decoy and pretended to be a 15-year-old person and with whom the teacher engaged in inappropriate sexual conversations; for sharing inappropriate images; for attending outside of what the teacher believed to be the home of a 15-year old person for the purpose of engaging in sexual activities; and for inappropriately communicating online with an individual whom the teacher believed to be under the age of 18 years. The hearing committee ordered a letter of severe reprimand to encompass all four charges, a declaration that the teacher is ineligible for membership in the Association, and a recommendation to the minister of education to cancel the teacher’s teaching certificate.
- Received the report of a hearing committee that found a teacher guilty of eight charges of unprofessional conduct for providing biased and unsubstantiated information to students as the teacher departed the school; for presenting a report regarding the competence of another teacher without notifying that teacher; for presenting a report regarding the performance of the principal without notifying the principal; for behaving toward staff in a manner that was inappropriate, including aggressive interactions in the presence of students and through e-mail; for yelling at students in class for their actions or inability to respond appropriately; for having students kneel in front of the teacher as part of a lesson; for providing instruction to students while the property was closed to school division employees; and for orchestrating the closure of the school to the staff of the school division. The hearing committee imposed a penalty of a single letter of severe reprimand to encompass all eight charges, fines totalling $12,500 for all charges, a declaration that the teacher is permanently and immediately ineligible for membership in the Association, and a recommendation to the minister of education that the teacher’s teaching certificate be permanently canceled.
- Approved field member committee and representation assignments for 2023/24.
- Amended the frames of reference of the Teacher Education and Certification Committee and the Lethbridge Area Field Experiences Committee. ❚