Survey conducted by angry administrators the striking bus drivers, teacher Thu, 7 December 2000 By Nick Martin RIVER East principal Rod Giesbrecht and Wayne Ritcher, colleagues have infuriated administrators, teachers, striking school bus drivers and nearby school services with a wide-ranging investigation that is now being delivered to the residents of Ward 1. They have been accused of asking prominent questions and inflaming already bitter working relationships. Both agents asked residents if they were in favour of providing transportation services. They asked for or did not request undefined dress codes for staff and students, grouped students with special needs in one place, and partnered with the Transcona-Springfield School Division or Winnipeg One`s Elmwood Section. River East`s board of directors has already slapped a “form of mistrust” of the two agents by telling all workers` groups that the department does not tolerate or support the investigation, said Board Chair Gail Scheer. “These are policy issues. The public was expected to respond very narrowly. Only excerpts of information were given,” Scheer said. Ritcher said yesterday that the public response had been positive so far, but that given the negative reaction of the board of directors, they would probably keep the information collected to themselves.
“Such a survey has never existed in the East River,” Giesbrecht said. “Wayne and I paid for it, and now we`re delivering it.” They delivered 10,000 copies to Ward 1 in the southwest corner of the division. In a preamble to a question on ideal class sizes, it is noted that teachers are lobbyists in the province to define class sizes “regardless of available programs, spaces or costs” to ensure teacher jobs, a campaign that could prevent children from making their school choice. A question on finance says that wages and social benefits account for 86 per cent of East River households, that teachers receive an average of $53,000 for 200 working days and that 70 per cent of the inhabitants do not have children in the school system: are teachers` salaries fair?, ask Giesbrecht and Ritcher; What percentage of the budget of wages and benefits is acceptable? River East Teachers Association President Nancy Kerr said teachers who are about to begin negotiations for a new contract are protesting to the board. Mark Kernaghan, the canadian Union of Public Employees representative for striking school bus drivers, could not believe that the administrators had left their insistence on the development of the strike, and were not able to get the community`s opinion until after. Transcona Springfield President Mary Andree and Winnipeg One President Liz Ambrose said all merger discussions between the school`s boards should take place. “I object to directors doing their own thing.” Media Room: Press releases 10% Salary increase, 4-year contract for CUPE at Transcona-Springfield School Division 10/30/2000 Winnipeg – More than 200 CUPE members working last night for the Transcona-Springfield Division voted in favour of a new four-year contract with a 10 per cent pay increase. “Our members voted in favour of this contract because wage increases and salary adjustments put us on an equal footing with other groups in the city,” said Cupe 3465 President John Friesen.