In late 2016, Marshall Jarvis, Ontario English Catholic Teachers’ Association (OECTA) General Secretary, approached CCSTA Executive Director Julian Hanlon about forming a partnership between the two organizations. OECTA is the only union in Canada that represents only Catholic teachers.
“We got together with them in Toronto for a meeting, and we talked about cooperating in areas where we could,” said Mr. Hanlon. “And OECTA has a lot of professional development resources available for teachers.”
CCSTA President Marino Gazzola said that these resources could be very valuable to Catholic educators across the country.
“A lot of our provincial associations, especially the ones that are not funded, don’t have access to those types of resources without buying them,” said Mr. Gazzola. “OECTA’s proposal was that they would share what they have free of charge.”
“We know that our partners across the country certainly appreciate having access to it,” said Mr. Hanlon. “The associations have all expressed interest in using them.”
One of the resources made available by OECTA is called Encouraging Math Learning at Home: A Guide for Parents. Colleen Easson, CCSTA’s Director of British Columbia, said it offers great advice for parents.
“It gave a very practical approach for parents on how to integrate the learning principles of math in everyday occurrences,” she said. “Cooking, sewing, and building items at home reinforce the math needed to work on projects.”
Apart from sharing resources, OECTA and the CCSTA have agreed to an ongoing partnership. On national issues of interest to both parties, such as the Theodore case, they agreed that they would share information and discuss matters as appropriate.
“Certainly, there was an understanding that we will probably meet again to continue the partnership,” said Mr. Gazzola.