Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Prince Rupert Teachers continue to press for increased COVID safety in schools; announce plans for public rally December 10

Prince Rupert teachers are stepping
up their engagement on COVID related
 Safety issues at local schools
The Prince Rupert District Teachers’ Union is continuing in its efforts to  raise public awareness on the importance of a mask requirement, better distancing measures, and other safety improvements for students and school staff, with local members asking the public to lend a hand in sending their message to SD52 with a Road Rally on December 10th at 4PM.

The rally is one part of a public awareness campaign to be launched on December 2, 2020, that will include advertising in local media, leafleting outside of schools (before and after school, off school grounds), rallies for safe schools, and other community outreach for school safety.

Teachers are calling on School District 52 (SD52) to implement higher standards for students in the district. 

As for the action plan towards the Road Rally, Teachers and members of the public have been invited to assemble along 7th Ave East, meeting at the corner at 7th Ave East and Green Street.

Participants are asked to remain in their cars to ensure physical distancing. 

The rally will drive through town as a caravan, ending outside out the SD52 office.

The concept of the road rally was one of a number of themes that members of the local union reviewed during a General Meeting on Saturday November 21, 2020, following which they voted on recommendations for specific school safety improvements. 

At that meeting, teachers voted to recommend that masks be mandated in schools whenever physical distancing is not possible (with exceptions provided for medical and other student needs). 

These recommendations were brought to SD52 at a November 30, 2020 meeting between union officers, the Superintendent, and the Board Chair. 

The PRDTU is still awaiting a response from SD52 and noted how they appreciated the opportunity to bring its recommendations directly to SD52.

“Local teachers are united around school safety. We want schools to be safe for everyone – students and staff alike. That’s why we’re calling fora mask mandate in local schools.”--PRDTU President Gabriel Bureau

As we outlined last month, the PRDTU had called for a larger sense of local leadership from SD52 and made note of the unique needs of the North Coast region and how a mask mandate and other measures especially urgent for SD52 are required. 

“We need local leadership on school safety, especially given the remote and rural location of many communities served by our schools, the number of vulnerable students and families in the district, and the importance of protecting Elders and other community member. Teachers in Prince Rupert and the region served by School District 52 want the community to know that we value school safety first and foremost for all our students. That’s why the teachers are calling for improvements to school safety.” -- PRDTU President Gabriel Bureau

More notes on education in Prince Rupert can be explored from our archive page.

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