Recognizing our teachers, throughout the year - By Debbie Horrocks



    MONTREAL, Sept. 30 /CNW Telbec/ - Have you ever asked a friend,
colleague, a loved one...have you ever asked yourself if there is a teacher
who truly changed your life? If you have, no doubt, the answer has always
been, "yes".
    UNESCO marks World Teachers' Day this Sunday, Oct.5th. It is worthy of
our recognition too, as parents, taxpayers, politicians, journalists or school
board members. Each day, in classrooms across Quebec, we entrust teachers to
guide, inform, support, discipline, evaluate, inspire, protect and prepare our
children. We ask them to deliver a challenging curriculum, adapted to a
changing world. We ask them to do so in classrooms with a diversity of
students, a limited availability of resources and an increasingly demanding
audience. Our teachers deliver and our students are prompted to discover their
talents and challenge their full potential.
    There are some 8,000 teachers who practice this vital profession in the
340 English public schools, adult and vocational centres across the province.
The Quebec English School Boards Association (QESBA) and its nine member
school boards are responsible for the management of that school network. Our
teachers are on the front line, and with the support of our principals,
professionals and support staff, they consistently deliver quality education
to students across the system. Of course, there are occasional differences
between us and the union that represents our teachers. We inevitably find
constructive ways together to surmount those differences in the best interests
of our children. But more important, we find no differences when it comes to
our shared assessment of the essential place and the immeasurable impact of
those individuals who choose as their calling to teach our children.
    There is a persistent tendency towards cynicism in the public's
perception of teachers, and that is unworthy and dangerous. Every stakeholder
in our society has an interest in properly situating the teaching profession
at the exalted level where it belongs. Collectively, we need our most talented
young people to consider teaching careers, where they will be afforded the
competitive conditions that will encourage the best to stay and succeed within
the Quebec education system. And, we need to set the example to our children
that the teachers who greet them in the classroom each morning do so with our
support, admiration and gratitude. That is a message we must deliver, on
October 5th and the 364 days of each year that follow.

    Debbie Horrocks is President of the Quebec English School Boards
Association (QESBA)




For further information:

For further information: Kimberley Hamilton, Communications and Special
Projects Coordinator, (514) 849-5900 ext 225, (514) 919-3894 (cell)


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