May 13th, 2019

Teachers report continued issues with classroom supports

Halifax-- A follow-up survey from Educators for Social Justice (ESJ) shows that teachers still believe there are inadequate levels of support in the classroom. In February, ESJ released a survey showing a majority of teachers had major concerns with the education system following the Liberal government’s decision to legislate teachers back to work.

“The Liberal government and Minister Churchill aren’t willing to listen to parents, teachers or students. They continue to say that things are improving but that’s not what we’re hearing,” said NDP Education spokesperson Claudia Chender. “After numerous reports last week that staff were cut from important programs, the government has refused to be clear about the cuts. Given this survey of teachers showing continued dissatisfaction with the situation in Nova Scotia’s classrooms today, we need clarity from the Minister.”

The survey ran from April 29 to May 6, 2019 and had almost 600 people respond. The majority of respondents disagreed with statements from the Minister of Education that things had significantly changed since early 2018.

“What we have here is a crystal clear message from these teachers that things still need to improve in our classrooms,” said Molly Hurd, a member of ESJ and one of the authors of the survey report. “We know that parents, students, and teachers in Nova Scotia see the cracks in the system every day. We need the government to look beyond their own spin about new hires and understand that these problems are still very real for teachers in classrooms today.”

The Halifax Regional Centre for Education recently had to explain that they are reducing the number of staff for the Early Literacy Supports program. There are also serious concerns that there are staff reductions planned for the High School program Options and Opportunities (O2) next year.