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From The Chair

What We Do

Read the Governing Ourselves section to become familiar with Council's work.

By Nicole van Woudenberg, OCT
Photo: Matthew Plexman

Photo of College Chair Nicole van Woudenberg, Ontario Certified Teacher.

If you're like the majority of College members, the "blue pages" is likely the first section you read in Professionally Speaking. In particular, you've probably already read the discipline summaries, which, as per legislation, are required to be reported to members. Starting with this issue, you may notice that the Governing Ourselves section only has "blue pages" for discipline summaries and the investigation case study.

Governing Ourselves is the most important part of the College's communication to its membership. It highlights the work accomplished at Council's meetings and what happens in between meetings.

The Ontario College of Teachers is a self-governing regulatory body. The Ontario College of Teachers Act and regulations define the role of Council in that it sets the College's direction.

It is important to note that Council as a whole makes decisions in the public interest. The College has to execute the mandate, as outlined in the Act, and those activities cost money. Hence, we pay annual fees.

Collectively, Council members remain focused on making decisions that fund core activities, including setting professional standards, licensing, accrediting teacher preparation programs, investigating and resolving complaints, and holding disciplinary hearings.

Stakeholders and members of the public can make presentations related to the College mandate at any Council meeting. Members and the public can also join the gallery to observe meetings or disciplinary hearings. In lieu of these options, read the Governing Ourselves section to keep abreast of the work Council is doing to fulfil its mandate.

Currently, one of the business items Council is focused on is the legislation passed by the former Ontario government related to therapy funding for victims of sexual abuse (see Section 58.1 (1). We are also dealing with a decline in registered College members, which decreases the revenue that funds our core activities.

The Governing Ourselves section communicates important Council issues to its membership. On behalf of Council, I welcome formal communication related to the mandate from members, stakeholders and the public.

Nicole van Woudenberg's handwritten signature.