They’re Overpaid, But At Least They Don’t Know How To Teach

    Do not think about, write about or deal with  human behavior without determining the effects of incentives. It’s not their money, of course they’ll waste it.

   I’m really curious about how this will play out. Bankrupt province, although they’re liberals, so they can’t recognize bankruptcy–entitled unions which have been pandered to for decades–the only unknown is whether tax creators are fed up. Since the average wage of the union members is much higher than the average taxpayer, one wonders how long it will be. The tax consumers are threatening to pounce like an angry rabbit.

    Kelly McParland
    National Post

Biting the hand that feeds the educators

With so many recent grads looking for work, the last thing you want is to poke a stick in the eye of the institution that supplies those jobs. But these are teachers’ unions

Ontario has such a glut of teachers that new graduates can wait five years without finding a full-time position. Some can’t even scratch their way onto a list of substitute teachers.

There is such an oversupply of teachers, that the province has doubled the time required for an undergraduate degree to two years and cut funding to the universities offering teaching degrees by 25%. Nipissing University cancelled a 12-year-old program, offered in conjunction with Sir Wilfrid Laurier University, that offered both a teaching degree and a bachelor of arts. The University of Toronto got out of undergraduate education degrees altogether and will concentrate on its graduate programs.


     Graduate programs in education. Teaching nonsense at a “higher” level.

Teaching jobs are so scarce that graduates are looking to Australia or the U.K., where the grass is greener. British schools have jobs available because the conditions aren’t nearly as attractive as in Canada. British recruiters are actively seeking to sign up frustrated Ontario graduates.

The reason teaching is so popular is simple: It’s a good job with excellent pay and attractive benefits. Yet, faced with an over-saturated market, a glut of jobless graduates and a provincial government with a $12.5 billion deficit and a self-appointed deadline to balance the books, Ontario’s teachers’ unions have surveyed the situation and reached the least sensible conclusion: They’re complaining loudly about poor treatment and demanding their members authorize a strike, unless the province offers improvements.


  I can guarantee that the deadline to balance the books will be missed, yet again.

In any other profession – sorry, scratch that — in any profession outside the public sector, this would be deemed so nutty it would raise serious doubts about the mental faculties of those in charge. When you have a group of employees lucky enough to have attractive jobs in a tight job market with thousands of young replacements eager to take their place, the last thing you want is to poke a stick in the eye of the institution that supplies those jobs and benefits. But these are teachers’ unions, remember.

The unions are talking about striking because they’re still mad at the heavy-handed tactics used by former premier Dalton McGuinty during the last bargaining period. McGuinty froze wages in a take-it-or-leave-it confrontation that sparked protests and rotating strikes. His successor, Kathleen Wynne, reopened the contracts and spent $468 million to ensure union support prior to last spring’s election, but that’s not good enough for the unions.

The 76,000 members of the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario voted 95% in favour of a strike mandate last month, prompting union president Sam Hammond to proclaim that members had “sent a powerful message that they will not stand for a repeat of the last round of bargaining involving contract strips and unconstitutional legislation removing our bargaining rights.” The Ontario English Catholic Teachers Association is urging its members to give it a similarly strong mandate in an upcoming vote.

That the teachers don’t have a leg to stand on is painfully obvious. The government they’re shaking their fists at is the same one they have worked so diligently to re-elect time and again. In hurling threats at Premier Wynne they are challenging a woman they saw as their preferred choice for office just months ago.


    A lesbian premier–according to post-modern thought, she can do no wrong.  It’s not the gender or sexual orientation, of course, it’s the liberal assumptions that make this charade a parade of errors.

Ms. Wynne is a far more sympathetic bargainer than Mr. McGuinty, but has already stated categorically that there is no more money in the pot for teachers. The unions know this: In December, the Ontario English Catholic Teachers Association sent its members a list of recent public settlements, heavy with freezes, cutbacks and benefit concessions. They know as well as Ms. Wynne that the government can’t possibly make a special case of the teachers without rousing the fury of those unions that have already bitten the bullet and taken what they could get.

But they have to posture. Union bosses need to justify their positions, and it doesn’t look good to throw up their hands, admit the province is broke and that big new gains are out of the question. So they demand strike mandates and post fire-breathing statements on their websites.

Should a strike actually take place, it would be an admission of defeat by union bosses incapable of accepting the reality of a government that has tied its own hands by feverishly overspending. Imagine the public reaction: A glut of teachers with enviable contracts stalking off the job against a government knee-deep in debt and desperate to avoid raising taxes. Good luck with that, union bosses. Enjoy the posturing while it lasts.


Government Job or Respect–Which’ll It Be?
Cheerio and ttfn,
Grant Coulson, Ph.D.
Author, “
Days of Songs and Mirrors: A Jacobite in the ‘45.”
Cui Bono–Cherchez les Contingencies


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