21 Jun 2017
On Wednesday, June 21, 2017, more than 150 teachers, education workers, parents, and other concerned community members rallied on the steps of the Toronto District School Board (TDSB) office to call on Board officials and Trustees to address the growing concern of inequitable Full-Day Kindergarten (FDK) class sizes.
“FDK is a bedrock of our shared public education system,” said ETT President John Smith. “All children deserve a fair start. Equitable kindergarten class sizes mean more one-on-one time, which is necessary to facilitate students’ growth and development.”
Currently, as a cost saving measure, the TDSB is dividing up kindergarten classes so that in some schools there are classes with up to 30 students, while others only have 15. This limits the number of Designated Early Childhood Educators (DECEs) that the Board has to hire, as each kindergarten class of 16 or more students is required to have a DECE. There is no sound pedagogical reason for this.
“Our rally, and our wider FDK campaign, is about making the voices of educators, parents, and other concerned community members heard,” said Smith. “In that regard, we are making progress. Thanks to your messages to TDSB Director John Malloy, and by announcing this rally, the Board has agreed to meet with ETT to discuss these issues on Monday, June 26.”
“This is an important step towards a better FDK program and the schools Toronto students deserve,” added Smith. “We will continue to need meaningful talks with the Board to address inequitable class sizes, and other issues as they pertain to FDK.”
As our FDK campaign continues, all ETT members are encouraged to visit the ETT website to send an email message to TDSB Director John Malloy in support of equitable kindergarten class sizes.
-reprinted from the Elementary Teachers of Ontario