Limestone Local

Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario

Good classrooms start with good teachers - letter from our President

January 10th, 2011

Re: Giving Better Teachers the Money They Deserve, editorial, Jan. 6.

From reading your editorial, one would think that teachers are neither evaluated nor accountable for their performance. Nothing could be further from the truth. Teachers in Ontario, for example, work in a highly regulated environment and face a rigorous performance appraisal system involving classroom observation, reports and in-depth reviews with evaluators.

And like doctors and lawyers, they are accountable to their professional regulatory body. Differences in teacher pay are not just based on years of experience and degrees obtained. Those teachers who continually upgrade their teaching skills in professional development courses during the school year and summer months may receive additional financial rewards.

Just as doctors aren’t paid based on the number of patients who live or die, teachers aren’t paid by the number of students that pass or fail. Rather, we highly regulate these professions to ensure the highest levels of competency to support, nurture, and educate whole societies with differing needs and abilities. That’s why it’s illogical to measure success, and base pay, on narrowly defined outcomes.

Sam Hammond, president, Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario, Toronto.

National Post/Monday, Jan. 10, 2011