Children not widgets to be turned out

Crofton – A recent letter regarding the teachers labour dispute asks: If your employees sought to control your business, what would your response be?

 

Successful businesses, especially large ones, would do well to listen to what their employees are saying; who knows better what works or doesn’t work on the shop floor?

 

To stretch the analogy a little further, we as taxpayers own the public education system, and hire the government to manage it. But many MLAs will not use the public system and send their children to private schools instead. What would your

 

response be if your hired managers refused to patronize your business, and in fact seemed intent on destroying it?

 

In any case, to think of education as a business is simply wrong. Children are not widgets to be stamped out on an assembly line. They are individual human beings whose needs cannot be met and whose aptitudes cannot be nurtured in an overcrowded classroom, especially those with special challenges who are receiving no added support.

 

The writer is correct to say that this dispute is not about benefits and wages.

 

Christy Clark’s statement that the BCTF’s demands are not in line with other public-sector

 

agreements is intended to distract us from the fact that money spent on class size and composition is not for the teachers, it is for the students. That is what teachers are fighting for, and they deserve all the support we can give them.

 

We all profit when all our children’s rights to a good education are protected. If the public education system fails, the losses are immeasurable.

 

Steve Lewis Crofton

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