On Monday, September 28, 2015, the Scarborough Mirror published the following article about Remembrance Day and Work-to-Rule actions. ETT President, John Smith, was interviewed for the article.
The Elementary Teachers of Toronto (ETT) are assuring students, parents and Royal Canadian Legion members that Remembrance Day activities will happen this year, despite the ongoing work-to-rule strike action.
“We’re making an exception for Remembrance Day. All Remembrance Day activities will continue,” said ETT president John Smith. “You can reassure them that Remembrance Day activities are not struck. We’re recognizing that and honouring that.”
The Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario, of which the ETT is a part, has started work-to-rule strike action on the first day of school.
Under this directive, teachers are not participating in some extra-curricular activities, such as field trips, collecting money or school fundraisers, collecting or distributing school board paperwork and others.
Smith said activities, such as the Remembrance Day poster contests and veteran visits, will continue at local schools.
Students from grades 1 to 12 have an opportunity to participate in a Remembrance Day poster contest, and grades 4 to 12 can also participate in poem, essay and video contests.
The student submissions are forwarded to a local Legion, where the top entries move on to a zone level (there are three zones in Toronto), then district level (all of Toronto), then provincial and finally national. Each level has cash prizes and prizes go up in value at each level.
Sheila Harris, the Youth Education Chairperson for Toronto’s Legions, said the contest is very important to the organization.
“We’re trying to pass the torch to the younger people,” she said. “The younger people have to remember the sacrifices that were made.”
Harris reminds any student or parent who is having trouble submitting their contest entry at school, can also do it through their local Legion, or by contacting her at 416-293-3498 or firstname.lastname@example.org .