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December 1998

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Q: Are you going to send me an invoice in 1999?

A: Most teachers will have their annual membership fee deducted from their pay in January. Teachers not paying by payroll deduction – including teachers on leave, short-term occasionals, some private school teachers and those not working for school boards – will be invoiced on February 15. The payment due date is April 15, and only one invoice will be issued.

If you paid by invoice last year and you haven’t started working full-time for a publicly-funded school board or a private school where teachers contribute to the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, the College will send you a $90 invoice for your 1999 membership.

Please remember that these invoices go to the home address we have for you in our registry files. If you’ve moved, or if the address we have for you is not accurate, you should inform the College in writing today of your correct address.

Q: How does the College handle complaints from parents and/or students about issues like too much homework or poor marks?

A: The College encourages members of the public to seek local solutions – to talk to the teacher, principal or superintendent involved. The College’s responsibility for regulating the profession has not diminished at all the rights and responsibilities that teachers, principals, superintendents or school boards have under the Education Act.

In other words, school boards are still responsible for supervising classroom instruction – and teachers’ rights under their collective agreements are unchanged.

Are members of the College Council full-time? Are they required to take a leave of absence from their teaching jobs? How are they paid?

No, all 31 members of Council – both elected and appointed – are part-time. The 17 College members elected by the teaching profession continue to perform their regular jobs and the College pays their employers for the days they spend on College business.

The 14 appointed members have a wide variety of occupations – a number of them are also educators and College members. The Ministry of Education and Training pays them the standard per diem for public appointees to the councils of Ontario’s self-regulating colleges for the days they spend on College business.

Q: Does the College replace the QECO and OSSTF qualifications systems?

A: No, they remain in place. The Qualifications Evaluation Council of Ontario (QECO) and the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation qualifications systems were developed by the affiliates of the Ontario Teachers’ Federation in consultation with school boards. They are related to placement on the salary grid arrived at in collective bargaining. The College has no role in that process.

I already had a transcript for the additional work I did for my honours degree sent to QECO. Why doesn’t it appear on my Certificate of Qualification from the College?

The College does not exchange information with QECO or OSSTF. If you want all your degrees to appear on your certificate, you must ensure that the College receives an official transcript directly from the granting institution.

The College also does not receive information about additional degrees or qualifications from school boards or other employers.

Q: I have many years of teaching experience in my country but I have never completed a formal teacher education program. May I still apply to the College?

A: To be licensed to teach in Ontario, you must have completed an acceptable teacher education program – at least one academic year long – which includes practice teaching. If you have not completed a formal program of teacher education you can contact one of Ontario’s 11 faculties of education for information about the Bachelor of Education degree program, which is Ontario’s program of teacher education.

Q: Why doesn’t the College get involved and speak out for teachers involved in strikes and lockouts?

A: Collective bargaining and political action on behalf of teachers are not part of the College’s mandate. They are the mandate of the Ontario Teachers’ Federation (OTF) and its affiliates. The OTF and the individual teachers’ unions have made it clear that they do not want the College to be involved in these issues. When the legislature was considering the Ontario College of Teachers Act, the OTF asked to have "promote the profession of teaching" removed from the purposes of the College – and it was.