Saturday, December 21, 2013

Ontario School Boards and Wage Freezes (or not), Schools and the Poor, and more...

Teaching teens about credit pays off in the long run
Toronto Star
...As a parent, rather than trying to stall the inevitable meeting of kids and credit, a better approach is to educate teens as to how credit works and about the financial responsibility that goes with acquiring plastic money and building a credit history...

Another opportunity for us to highlight our Financial Literacy articles.

Ontario school boards skirted wage freeze with raises for senior staff
Toronto Star
Ontario school boards awarded raises averaging 3 per cent a year to many senior staff, despite a provincial wage freeze on management salaries...The revelation of salary hikes at school boards exposes weaknesses in wage-freeze legislation meant to cut costs

This was in no way unique to the school boards, the wage freeze was a mandated "policy", no real legal teeth. Many sectors skirted the wage freeze initiative, however, in light of the Putting Students First legislation, this sort of activity does shine a real light on the boards (and government).

Schools must break the cycle of poverty
Toronto Star
And as neighbourhoods become even more segregated along income lines, this divide will only get worse... So can we do anything about this? While addressing child poverty is a complex issue, there are things that we could do in education to reduce its effects. First, we should stop segregation. In Toronto, we segregate students in two ways. The first is effectively based on income, as we force students to attend the school near to where they live. This is common practice in most cities, but with notable exceptions like Edmonton and Vancouver... The second method of segregation is based on academics.

Related - a recently published in New York Times series titled “Invisible Child”, offering an in-depth look at child poverty and homelessness.

Education can pull kids out of poverty [Letter]
Toronto Star
we need “the best teachers teaching our neediest students.”... The best teachers are not necessarily the most credentialed ones. I had other English teachers with MAs, but they failed to motivate those of us who weren’t motivated at home.

Guiding Growth in Ontario's Postsecondary Education System: Province Committed to Sustainable Growth to Meet Demand
Ontario Government
Ontario has introduced a plan to guide major capacity expansions at postsecondary institutions, ensuring students have access to spaces where they are needed most.

Education — the greatest social policy challenge of our time
It has really been only 25 years — barely a generation — that we began to talk openly about the residential school era, the abuse and the effects of its policies to eliminate our language and culture... Now we are in a period of building and shaping our own education systems, based on our culture and language.