Opening Statement



Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Welcome Back!

Welcome back to the new school year! I hope you will enjoy the fall edition of my blogspot. Like you, I am very busy with my students right now. The autism class I've been setting up for the past two years seem eager to be back. We even have a few new Grade 9 students who've joined us. The parents, new and old, who have been dropping by to say hello are just great. We must be doing something right! :-)

As you probably know from my June blogs, my students are severely autistic, there's no question about that, so I am very pleased too that we all seem to be such a happy group! Also, let's face it, as much as we love our holidays, teaching is a vocation. There's nothing better than seeing our colleagues and students again come September! At most schools anyway. Hopefully yours too.

My autumn blogs are a bit slow in being posted right now because I am so busy with school. If you wish to check out my July and August archive directory, below the centre column of blogs, you will can find out about my trips to Mexico, Cuba and NYC this summer. There's still also photos posted all over my blogsite on the side columns and below. Or you can click on my slide show to see my Flickr archives for more. Mexico was incredible; snorkeling and exploring the Mayan ruins at Chitzen Itza. The Cuban Schools project is also doing great. I was happily surprised by those of you who've approached me to say you might be interested in helping out with or at the Cuban Schools. Sure! Welcome aboard!

I am working on a few new blogs about teacher issues for this fall, as your TSU 3rd VP. See my blog Manifesto from last June if you need more info on what this is all about. The views here are totally my own. I share them with you, the members who duly elected me, so you know what's going on. I look forward to having a frank, honest and direct discussion with you about our shared school and union concerns, activities and so on and so forth. I sometimes send out notices when I think there is something you might be interested in. You can always reply with "Delete" in the subject bar if you don't want these, but few do, and I really urge you to stay tuned. My aim is to be constructive. There will be some real interesting stuff coming up in the year ahead.

On your new 2011-12 TSU [Toronto Secondary Unit] union executive, I am very pleased to be the executive liaison for our BTC [Beginning Teachers Committee] once again. I have also picked up the RAC [Religious Affairs Committee], as promised during the May election. Again, see my directory if you want to know more about this. Other than that? After eleven years of chairing or being the executive liaison for PAC [Political Advisory Committee], this portfolio has now been given by executive to another executive member. It's a big weight off my back in some ways. Whew! It's been a lot of work, and I can only wish Frank well with it. I had hoped to pick Membership Services too, but no. Methinks the very idea of this blogspot has not exactly tickled some folk pink but I say what needs to be said. Anyway, I will look forward to seeing what other TSU duties I might still pick up over the next little bit.

Your TSU executive met the week before school. The committee lists should officially go out from our office this week. We've been asked not to disclose this information until it is given out to everybody. Fair enough, but stay tuned. There will be more informative and constructive school and union news and views coming in the days, weeks and months ahead.

Retirees: I'm glad you like the blogspot. Your invitations should be coming out soon if not already for the official breakfast TSU will be holding in your honour. Call the main office for more information.

For my non-TSU teacher readers please know there will be a lot of other interesting issues coming up too. I promise to keep my blogspot lively and entertaining for the average everyday reader in a non-teacher union type way too. I've received well over 5000 reads since I started the site in May, from TSU members and other interested readers around the world [the US, UK, Cuba, India, Afghanistan, Mexico, Cuba, Russia, etc. etc.] I am truly honoured!

A special hello must go to my autism education readers! Yes the important work goes on, and I will be discussing this more too, and thank you for your missives and inspiration, especially on Twitter.

Our teacher counterparts in other countries may be interested in how we are organized and in learning more about the work our teacher unions do here in Ontario, Canada. I will try not to use too many acronyms without introducing them first, but I am sure many if not most of the teaching issues discussed will be familiar to you all. So this then is how we try to handle them here.

Otherwise? Well, it's back to my lesson preps for tonight. So as they say in Cuba and Mexico:

A Su Salud!/
To Your Health!

David Chiarelli

PS For the record, this blogspot has had 859 visitors since school ended for the holidays in June. There have been 5470 readers in all since I started it in late April. The vast majority of you are from here, the rest from around the world, as I mentioned earlier. Thanks everyone for your interest and support.

1 comment:

Adam Thomas said...

Nice blog and beautiful pictures !

Holidays in Cuba

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