VANCOUVER, Dec. 8 /CNW/ - The report of Don Avison, appointed as a fact finder to review the function of the BC College of Teachers, provides an accurate description of the workings of the body that regulates 75,000 persons holding BC teaching certificates, according to College Registar, Kit Krieger. Krieger agreed with the main assertions found in the report:
- That the status quo is unacceptable;
- That students are at risk due to the failure of the College to fulfill its public interest mandate;
- That the BCTF has and continues to intrude upon the ability of the College to carry out its mandate;
- That politics have dwarfed the public interest with respect to the conduct of the College Council; and
- That the College does not meet the standard established by other regulatory bodies in the province.
"The Avison report provides abundant evidence that the College has, from its inception, failed to inspire public confidence that the public interest is upheld over particular interests, including those of the members of the College," said Krieger.
Krieger, a former BCTF President and member of the College Council was appointed to the position of Registrar in 2009. He applied for the position for the express purpose of advancing the independence of the College.
"Mr. Avison clearly identifies the BCTF as the major cause of the College's problems. Sadly, it appears that the BCTF does not understand the role of professional self-regulation. The most damning evidence of this is provided in the words from the BCTF, which admits to a strategy of control and limiting the mandate of the College," stated Krieger.
Krieger expressed confidence that self-regulation can be preserved, but asserted that that decision resides ultimately with government and the profession. "While government is the authority that determines whether teaching will be a self-regulating profession, I believe that government's decision will be shaped by whether or not it is confident that teachers understand and aspire to professional status. If teachers want to be and be seen to be professionals, they must embrace the full responsibilities that accompany self-regulation. Primary among these responsibilities is to place public interest ahead of the interests of the profession, an undertaking that requires an absolute separation between the regulatory function of the College and the advocacy function of the BCTF."
Minister MacDiarmid indicated that she will hold meetings with various groups in the weeks ahead, and Krieger and his professional staff look forward to participating in these meetings.
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