Following is an open letter in regards to the education labour dispute:
Dear Mr. Jim Iker, Mr. Peter Cameron, and Hon. Peter Fassbender,
My name is Spring Kristensen. Iâ€™m 13 and I am going into Grade 8 at D.W. Poppy Secondary for my first year of high school. I am emailing you today because I have some concerns about the teacher strike that is going on.
See, hereâ€™s the thing: I know youâ€™re trying to negotiate with each other and all, about the raise in teachersâ€™ pay and smaller class sizes.
Last year in my class at North Otter Elementary I had 29 classmates and nine of them needed extra help, so it slowed the rest of us down, and it was just so difficult for everyone, especially our teacher, Mrs. S. Spence.
I think you should be asking the students what they think, not just teachers and the government.
People like my friends and I care what happens to the teachers, to the government, and to the other students.
Iâ€™m very sorry to say it, but to me, it seems like you guys are only thinking about yourselves, not the students.
Some of the students are happy to get more of a summer, but for student like me, we kind of miss school. I like learning and being a part of the school, like helping out, joining clubs, and just being helpful.
Sadly, sometimes I wonder if we are ever going to go back to school.
So throughout my email, what Iâ€™m trying to say is, we need to go back to school!
Please, you all need to lower class sizes, because itâ€™s just too difficult for the teacher to try and help everyone when there are so many of us.
The pay, to be honest, I really donâ€™t know. My momâ€™s pay is considered a low income pay, and she works about 35 hours a week (with only three weeks unpaid vacation a year). Somehow, thanks to God, we manage to pay all the bills, but we donâ€™t have any left over after that is done (to let you know: she is a university graduate with a degree and is in management, but it is still tough).
Iâ€™m starting to think that the teachers donâ€™t need a pay raise. Yes, of course, they need to be paid well because they are a big part in helping our society grow and become better people.
Here is another fact: they make three times the amount of money my mom does, and also three times the vacation! Seems to me, thatâ€™s just unfair, so I know for sure people like my mom, single parents with children, do deserve the raise, not the teacher.
My mom is strong, she works hard, and I try to be like her every day.
Both sides say, â€œItâ€™s all about the students.â€ Well, if it is all about the students, then stop acting like children and work it out!
You guys are making this more difficult than it needs to be. Seriously, I think you should just take the teachersâ€™ pay raise and put it towards the schools, instead.
The teachers are wanting more help for the students who need it, so give the teachers a small raise and put the rest towards students who need help with learning.
Please think about what I have said, and the next time you to have a meeting, sincerely try and figure out a way to compromise, so that we can go back to school.
Spring Kristensen, Langley