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Disheartened by government

It's extremely disheartening to see our government undervalue education, placing greater strain on educators and limiting students' access to adequate supports.  

With districts scrambling to balance budgets, cuts to necessary services have to be made:  tough decisions that often leave our most vulnerable students adversely affected.  

However, the government defends this paradigm, pointing to PISA scores that show our students excelling on standardized tests.  

However, this is an extremely narrow lens, and while our students may be showing proficiency in the skills assessed on these international tests, the less measurable aspects are being ignored.  

Each day, I do my best to empower my students; I help students with low self-esteem find their own self-worth, I provide suitable boundaries and expectations for students who may not receive that kind of support at home, and I teach students how to think their way through an ever-changing world, hopefully equipping them to meet the challenges of an emergent reality in the 21st century.  

I'm not alone in this pursuit, either – this is what teachers do.  

These parts of our profession matter, but they've been made more difficult over the years as larger class sizes and more challenging classroom compositions keep us from being able to pursue these meaningful aspects as fully as we'd like. 

Ultimately, this fight is about values. It's about valuing education, it's about valuing the nurturing of our students, and it's about valuing the importance of BC's educators. 

However, the Liberal government values the bottom line, in which budgets trump our children's overall well-being. 

The Liberal message is simple: there is money, just not for our students.  

Plainly put, our kids deserve better.

 

Adrian Zuyderduyn

Teacher – Mount Boucherie Secondary School

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