FALL RIVER: Teachers are worried about what the implementation of the Glaze Report by the provincial government will mean for their profession, but more importantly, classrooms.
Ron Nugent, the Guidance Counsellor at Georges P. Vanier Junior High, said on top of the worries about the uncertainty teachers are facing, the report will make things even more chaotic leaving it in a crisis. He is also a member of the Nova Scotia Teachers Union (NSTU).
VIDEO: “This is a crisis.”
“It’s so chaotic now that teachers are afraid of our job security; not having enough teachers; and facing a massive sub shortage,” said Nugent. “People like me are going in to math; sciences; and English, but that’s not what I’m qualified for. I’m a health practitioner and Guidance Counsellor. That’s what I do.”
He had advice for parents across the province—get informed. He advised parents to look at the stats that are inconsistent in the report. He said HRSB and the province are actually ‘well above’ the standards set by the province. Teachers feel like they’re being attacked again, said Nugent.
“My biggest message to parents is they need to really open their eyes and not be manipulated by the Liberal government,” said Nugent. “That’s what’s happening right now. They’re putting a spin on it for tactics and their multi-million dollar media outlets and pushes in the news. They’re giving the parents a little lip service, things that they did last year. Parents are going to soon find out that’s not what this report is all about.
“This report is filled with a lot of fake facts. The government wants us to believe it’s in the best interest of our kids. It’s not. I’m a father first and I’m petrified what my son’s high school experience will be like.”
Nugent said parents need to recognize that this is a crisis.
“This is worse than it was last year,” he said. “You’re in a position to make a change here by standing up for your kids. If this Glaze Report is passed and adapted by the government the way they want to, it will keep our kids from excelling. We can’t let it happen.”
He was asked if this could mean teachers go on strike to be heard.
“Anything is possible at this point,” said Nugent, adding they’re asking the public to sign a petition.
Nugent said teachers are also worried about the province being able to take them and shoot them off to other areas, like the RCMP when they post officers.
“If the report is implemented, the government can tell us where we’re going, like the RCMP when they post someone,” he said. “This government is going to have the power to post a teacher.
“I can tell you, a lot of teachers for the amount of work they do in their communities, they’re not going to want to go. You’re going to see a lot of teachers leave the profession. I think teachers are so afraid now that we’re at a standstill now that we don’t know what direction to take.”
He said the Glaze Report is not ideal for students, and people are not being fed the proper information.
“If it is adopted the way it is, our students are not going to get the best qualified people to teach them; they’re going to have an environment that’s already beaten down and stressed out. That’s all going to impact them,” said Nugent. “I think it’s important that people know this.”
Nugent said with principals and vice principals being taken out of the Union, it will negatively affect the continuity in the schools. Minister Churchill has said they will be able to teach; however he said that’s inaccurate as they will not be part of the union.
He said mental health in the school system is at the highest point its ever been, even with the new hires the province have put in place since last year.
Nugent said others, like him, will have wished they had done something before its too late.
“Once this government passes the Glaze Report, it will be a done deal,” he said. “I want parents to step up. Get informed on this report, and do something. Contact your MLA and tell them to slow it down, that it doesn’t need to be passed right away and give people some time to digest it.”