Advance View: Classless action embarrassing

As we go to press late Friday afternoon, due to early deadlines for the Labour Day long weekend, we do not yet know whether or not tens of thousands of children will be heading off to classrooms today, Tuesday, Sept. 2… ostensibly the first day of school in this province.

At time of writing, B.C.’s teachers and their employers – our government – deigned finally to sit down for a chat about the possibility of maybe reaching some kind of agreement that might put teachers into their classrooms, instead of wandering around outside their schools, carrying placards and worrying about their bills that have been piling up for the past few months.

It is unconscionable.

With no more than a three-day weekend separating them from summer holidays and the traditional – and reasonably expected – start of school, parents still do not know which way the capricious winds of government-versus-teachers labour negotiations are blowing.

Teachers and government have hurled insults at each other, they have attempted to intimidate each other, and after months of this behaviour, they have accomplished nothing.

And of course, both sides blame the other for the lack of decorum, the lack of discussion, and most importantly the lack of rational movement towards a reasonable middle ground between their ridiculously divided positions.

These are the people to whom we entrust our children for their well-being and education on one side, and the people to whom we entrust the governance of our public institutions, our infrastructure, and our human resources management on the other.

We elected this government.

We trusted our teachers.

Right now, it’s just a little bit embarrassing to have to admit to being a British Columbian.

– B.G.

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