TORONTO, Feb. 15, 2012 /CNW/ - The Elementary Teachers' Federation of
Ontario (ETFO) is confident that Premier McGuinty will do the right
thing and reaffirm his government's commitment to public education in
the face of Drummond Commission proposals related to education.
"Let's recognize that the Drummond proposals are only recommendations.
ETFO is counting on the government to reaffirm its commitment to having
one of the best public education systems in the world when it presents
its spring budget," said ETFO President Sam Hammond. "Mr. Drummond may
not fully value the role education plays in the province's future
prosperity, but we know the Premier and his government do."
"Continued investment in the early years is key to student success,"
said Hammond. "It would be short-sighted and counterproductive to turn
the clock back on innovative reforms like full-day kindergarten and
smaller class sizes," said Hammond.
"One of the critical elements of the full-day kindergarten program is a
renewed emphasis on activity-based learning. Early childhood educators
and teachers are working with students to provide them with a definite
advantage and head-start on literacy, numeracy and social skills."
Hammond suggested that anyone who believes that primary class sizes
don't matter for student success should talk to a teacher.
"With primary class sizes capped at 20, children have a greater
opportunity to succeed. Teachers are able to spend more time with each
child. They are also able to create a positive environment for
learning, particularly given the number of children with special needs
in the class," he said.
Hammond added that Ontario needs to address the deficit, but focussing
solely on the public sector will work against economic recovery. "It
will mean a serious increase in unemployment and reduced income tax
revenue. Proceeding with corporate tax cuts this year will cost the
government an additional $2.6 billion in revenues. Regaining that
revenue and making economic investments in public infrastructure are
better alternatives than weakening the education system and
jeopardizing student success."
The Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario represents 76,000
elementary public school teachers and education professionals across
the province and is the largest teacher federation in Canada.
SOURCE Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario
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