On the path to better governance.
By Angela De Palma, OCT
Photo: Matthew Plexman
Inserted in the centre of this issue, you will find our new Professional Advisory — Duty to Report. It provides important information to Ontario teachers about their legal and ethical duty to report suspected cases of child abuse and/or neglect.
Sadly, abuse and neglect are realities for many Ontario children. Perhaps you have made that phone call to the Children’s Aid Society at some point in your career.
Just as every one of us has a responsibility to protect children from harm, the College has a responsibility to promote the duty to report. This document supports teachers with this obligation.
As I begin my term as Chair, I wish to acknowledge the collaborative leadership and good governance practices my predecessor Liz Papadopoulos, OCT, and our colleagues on the previous Council initiated.
They made significant strides toward improving timeliness, efficiency and transparency with respect to our disciplinary role. They helped enhance the teacher education program and they supported a comprehensive public awareness initiative.
With the tagline “Setting the Standard for Great Teaching,” the 2014 initiative educates the public about who we are as a regulatory body, how we regulate teaching in Ontario and, most importantly, how highly qualified members are. Our mandate requires us “to communicate with the public on behalf of the members of the College,” and Council has recognized this priority.
I am excited about collaborating with members of the seventh Council, who bring a rich new complement of expertise and perspectives to the College. Their valued contributions to the regulation of the teaching profession will be enhanced by a new mentorship program and learning opportunities on topics such as chairing committees and financial literacy.
You are part of a profession that regulates itself — just like nurses, doctors and lawyers. This means the people of Ontario trust teachers to govern our profession using our collective specialized knowledge, skills and experience. Elected and appointed Council members are knowledgeable, experienced and dedicated to leading the profession and serving the public interest. Your Council includes 23 elected members and 14 members of the public appointed by the provincial government.
Through their work on the College’s committees, Council members have various responsibilities including:
I look forward to working with Council members and College staff, who are committed to the organization and its goal to protect the public interest.
As you begin your new school year, the College will be cementing its path to better governance to strengthen the teaching profession’s role in self-regulation.