Teachers should register for an online account today to ensure they’re able to vote in the ATA’s upcoming Provincial Executive Council election.
That’s the message coming from election organizers as they prepare for an online vote that will take place from March 13 to 16.
While all ATA active and associate members in Alberta are eligible to vote, only those who have registered for an online account and are in good standing will have the ability to cast a ballot. For this reason, new ATA members and associate members are being strongly advised to register for their online account now.
“Without a verified and valid account, you can’t vote,” said Nikki Cloutier of the ATA’s Teacher Employment Services.
Account verification is a manual process that involves behind-the-scenes work by ATA staff. While most new applications for an ATA online account can be processed almost immediately, there are some instances where additional verification may be needed.
“It all depends on what member information the ATA currently has on file,” said Cloutier. “If we still need critical information, such as their postal code, date of birth or a current copy of their teaching certificate, gathering that data from the member could take some time.”
If a member doesn’t have an account and has waited until the voting window has opened to apply, any information gap could cause problems.
“Their account may not be verified before the voting window closes, and that would be unfortunate,” Cloutier said.
Waiting until the last minute to create an account for the election could also cause a bottleneck in the verification process, which could increase wait times even more.
“We encourage anyone who doesn’t have an online account with the ATA to sign up as soon as possible,” Cloutier said. “The sooner, the better.”
The detailed information collected during verification is needed to ensure the integrity of the vote, said Tanya Desjarlais, team lead with the ATA’s Information and Technology Services (ITS) department.
“We need to make sure that only eligible voters are taking part,” Desjarlais said. “We also use it to determine which district voting page the teacher is directed to when casting their electronic ballot.”
Teachers who already have an online ATA account are encouraged to verify their account information now to ensure it is still valid and up to date. A simple way to check is to log in on the website and update your profile.Occasionally, a member may forget their login or password, and after several failed login attempts, their account will be disabled. The member will then have to call the ATA and have their account reactivated. This process also takes some time.
Cloutier’s advice is to make sure you have your active online account up and running now to avoid disappointment later.
Create an ATA online account
Head to teachers.ab.ca and log in.
You’ll be prompted to enter your credentials or create an account. There is no cost to sign up.
1-855-407-3891 (toll-free in Alberta)
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