Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario eNewsletter Header
Vol. 6, No. 5
October 20, 2011

A message from the President - Sam Hammond

Celebrate the educators who work with our youngest learners

October 26th is the 11th anniversary of Child Care Worker and Early Childhood Educator Appreciation Day.

An initiative of the Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care (OCBCC), the day is designed to raise awareness about the education, skills, commitment, and dedication of Early Childhood Educators and Child Care staff. ETFO is one of the sponsoring unions.

 CCW & ECE Day Poster

OCBCC has passed a resolution asking municipalities to officially proclaim October 26th as Child Care Worker and Early Childhood Educator Appreciation Day. The OCBCC resolution, along with a letter explaining the significance of the day, has been sent to every municipality in Ontario.
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A letter has also been sent to all school boards asking them to adopt the day and encourage celebrations in their schools.

I encourage all members to support these efforts by calling or writing your local councillor and/or trustee. Ask them to officially recognize the many contributions of Child Care Workers and ECEs on October 26th this year and every year.

You can also seize the moment and organize some celebrations in your own school. Many teacher members now work alongside Designated Early Childhood Educators in their Kindergarten classrooms, and about 50% of elementary schools have before- and after-school programs that are staffed by Child Care Workers. Here are some ideas published by OCBCC to help you celebrate the important work of these educators.

On behalf of the Executive, I want to wish all Child Care Workers, ECEs, and DECEs a happy Child Care Worker and Early Childhood Educator Appreciation Day. Thank you for all that you do for the children in school-based child care programs, and for four and five year olds in the Full-Day Kindergarten Program.

Sam Hammond
ETFO President

Prime Ministers' Awards for Teaching Excellence

Congratulations to the following ETFO members who were recipients of the 2010-2011 Prime Minister's Awards for Teaching Excellence (Certificates of Achievement):

  • Simon Ives, Hillcrest Community School, Toronto. Member of the Elementary Teachers of Toronto Local. Read Simon's full biography here.

  • Tanya Leary, Waabgon Gamig First Nation School, Sutton West. Member of the York Region Teacher Local. Read Tanya's full biography here.

  • Lynn Wilkins, Courcelette Public School, Toronto. Member of the Elementary Teachers of Toronto Local. Read Lynn's full biography here.

Health & Safety - Make it happen!
practical steps to avoid slips, trips and falls.

Slips, trips and falls are leading causes of serious injuries in our schools. Common sense and quick reporting can prevent these occurrences.

If the sidewalk looks unsafe, it probably is. If the wobbly step hasn’t been fixed yet, it's time. When you see a colleague grabbing a chair instead of a step stool, help her/him find the ladder. And if you can’t locate the ladder quickly, tell your principal you need one close at hand.

You don’t need to wait until the monthly inspection to report a slip, trip and fall hazard. Write a note to your principal with "Health and Safety Hazard" in the header. Name the hazard and the risk. Request that it be fixed. Sign it, date it and hand it over.

Here’s an example: "Health and safety hazard: Water overflows from drainpipe onto sidewalk—slip, trip and fall hazard. The risk will increase when water freezes onto the sidewalk. Please fix the drainpipe to prevent water overflow."

It takes five minutes to report a workplace hazard in writing. It's one of the best investments we can make.


  • Perils of Perfectionism Part 1 - Regional Workshop for Women, Nov. 25-26, Toronto. Explore the correlation of perfectionism with: stress, emotions, addictions, and coping strategies. First time participants only. For more information, visit the ETFO website or contact Diane Balanyk-McNeil at 1-888-838 3836 ext. 2287.

  • Assertiveness Training for Women - Regional Workshop for Women, Dec. 2-3, Toronto. If you are interested in developing methods for dealing with angry or aggressive individuals then come to this workshop. For more information, visit the ETFO website or contact Diane Balanyk-McNeil at 1-888-838 3836 ext. 2287.

  • Jer's Pink Tulip Grants for schools running diversity, human rights, anti-bullying and anti-discrimination events. The goal of the program is to empower youth making positive changes in their community by providing financial support for their initiatives or events that promote diversity and end discrimination. Additional consideration will be given to initiatives related to the LGBTQ communities. For more information please follow this link.

  • Proud Rainbow Voices - Ontario Network for LGBTTQ Educators. The theme of the next meeting on November 5th in Whitby: "The Importance of Creating Positive Spaces in Our Workplaces - Going Beyond Displaying a Positive Space Poster, What else can we do??" If you are interested in attending, please RSVP by October 29th to Lauren Chapple at laurmeich@rogers.com.

  • The White Ribbon Campaign recently launched Phase 2 of the 'It Starts With You. It Stays With Him' campaign, including a series of eLearning modules developed in partnership with ETFO. The modules include information, tools and resources relevant for educators and students in grades 6-8, aimed at engaging boys and young men in promoting healthy, equal relationships and ending violence against women and girls. These can be accessed on the campaign website by visiting this link and entering ETFO as the Username and WhiteRibbon as the password.

    Help evaluate the eLearning modules, and you could win educational materials and training! To be entered in the draw: 1) review the modules, 2) fill out this brief survey by October 31, and 3) send an e-mail with your contact information to tdinner@whiteribbon.ca.

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