Sep 192013

QPAT Convention Banner 2013The QPAT pre-convention activities that will be held on Thursday, November 21, 2013 are now available for early registration. Click here for the PDF document.

To learn more about this year’s guest speaker, Mr. Greg Forbes Siegman, visit QPAT’s website here.

For those of you who are planning to attend the annual QPAT convention, the largest anglophone professional development activity in the province, why not beat the rush and make your hotel reservations now. Information about the official hotel for this event can also be found on QPAT’s website.

Mar 122013

A broad coalition of groups under the banner of Coalition prioritéducation has been formed to demand that the provincial government stop the continued cutbacks in the education budget. This coalition was initiated by the Fédération des comités de parents du Québec (FCPQ), the organization of parents’ committees in the French sector, and many groups have joined this coalition, including QPAT and the other teacher federations in the province, principals’ associations, the school board federations, and parent groups in the English sector.

The coalition has placed a petition on the National Assembly’s website calling for a stop to the cuts in education funding. The text of the petition “Making Public Education a Genuine Priority” is the following:

WHEREAS we want to make public education a genuine national priority for all of Québec;

WHEREAS the budget cuts to education in recent years have had numerous adverse effects on the quality of life in the educational community and have hampered academic perseverance and success;

WHEREAS these cuts have exacerbated social inequality among students and regional communities;

WHEREAS academic perseverance and success are crucial to the development of a healthy, committed and prosperous society;

We, the citizens of Québec, demand that the National Assembly convince the government to cease these cuts and take means to ensure an important and adequate investment in the quality of the education environment in schools so that public education becomes a genuine national priority, capable of meeting the needs of all students.

Teachers in all of QPAT’s local unions are encouraged to sign the petition on the National Assembly’s website at the following address:

It is recommended to use the online petition. However, copies of the petition may be printed from the coalition’s website and returned to the FCPQ. Go to the following site to print a copy; please note that the entire document must be printed without editing. EN.pdf 

Mar 102013
online-surveysDear ESTA teachers,
QPAT has requested volunteers from teachers throughout the province to conduct a survey on the topic of professional autonomy. Overall, 535 teachers will be surveyed provincially; ESTA has been asked to forward the names of twenty-five (25) teacher volunteers.
I would like to invite all ESTA teachers to participate in this survey. The online form can be found here:
All interested parties should complete the registration form before March 15, 2013.
Thank you for your interest and have a good union day!

Ray Venables, President
Dec 142012
Together we can have a positive impact on the world.
The Fondation Monique-Fitz-BackOxfam-Quebec, and the Etablissement Vert Brundtland (EVB) network have initiated Education: It All Makes “Cents” penny drive for elementary and secondary across the province of Quebec.  Our children are our most precious resource and their education is an investment we must make.  The Quebec Provincial Association of Teachers is proud to support this initiative.
  • 50% of profits raised will remain in the participating school to finance educational and environmental projects.
  • 25% will be donated to the Fondation Monique Fitz-Back to develop environmental and educational resources for teachers.
  • 25% will be donated to Oxfam-Quebec to support youth in developing countries
Schools can sign up for the Education: It All Makes “Cents” penny drive to raise money for their educational and environmental projects on-line at
The campaign is underway until April 25, 2013.
For more information, contact:
Fouzia Ouellaj
Oxfam Quebec
(514) 937-1614 ext. 253
Julie Moffet
Fondation Monique Fitz-Back
(418) 523-8585 ext. 231
Nov 272012

Adult Education HandbookAdult Education teachers will want to read the new “Adult Education Handbook” produced by QPAT and available in both English and French on their website (print copies will soon be sent to the centres). This reference document is a user-friendly complement to the teachers’ collective agreement for teachers in the adult education sector.

Nov 192012
Dear ESTA colleagues,
As we finish our first term, I know that many of you are planning on attending the annual QPAT Convention in Montreal. By now, your school union delegates should have given you a booklet listing the workshops and an admission coupon.
There are many opportunities for professional development at the annual QPAT Convention, but I would like to invite you to a very special event hosted just for YOU! I hope that you will be able to join me at the New Teacher Welcome Event (see attachment).
Ah! I remember my first QPAT Convention! Alas, I made a monumental mistake. After attending the all-day pre-Conference and the evening workshops, I retired early to my hotel for some much needed sleep and, therefore, missed the keynote speaker. I hope that you will not make the same mistake that I made and will come listen to Josh Freed (and if you’ve still got the energy, there’s a dance afterwards with door prizes!)
Here are a couple of final reminders: make sure to have your authorization to travel forms completed ahead of time AND make sure to save your name tags since you’ll need these to be reimbursed AND have a safe trip to/from Montreal.
I look forward to seeing many of you at the New Teacher Welcome Event at the Palais des Congrès in Montreal this Thursday.

Ray Venables

Nov 182012

On Thursday, November 15, I gave a presentation (with a little help from Jean-Paul Fossey, QPAT Executive Assistant) concerning online privacy at the Canadian Teachers’ National Staff Meeting in Ottawa, Ontario. As many of my colleagues know, I am a passionate advocate of the potential of educational technology when integrated in the classroom. However, the use of technology is a double-edged sword and the message that I wanted to convey was that there is an inherent danger for teachers who allow their private lives to become public since it may impact on their professional lives. Teachers must be especially careful when using email and social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter.

If you’d like to view my presentation, you can see it here. Otherwise, I strongly recommend the excellent CTF Cybertips resource.

-Ray Venables

Oct 232012
The PIC committee met today and created the 2012-2013 PIC Policy Kit.
It is important that teachers pay particular attention to page 6 of this year’s policy kit since there have been some changes made to who is eligible to apply for PIC funding. The amount of funding for this year is the same as last year except there is now a $1500 maximum limit.
Coincidentally, I just leaned today that the annual QPAT Convention Program is now available on QPAT’s website here. Any teacher who wishes to attend this Convention must remember the following important points:
  • Teachers must have their school/centre administrator sign their authorization to travel before they leave
  • Teachers must preserve their nametags as proof of attendance and submit them to ESSB with their expense claims
  • Teachers should register quickly if they intend on attending any pre-Convention activities
  • Teachers should be encouraged to attend the keynote speaker, Mr. Josh Freed
  • And teachers have the stamina, the Thursday night social is increasingly popular and fun to boot!
Oct 222012

For the out-of-province teachers that move to Quebec to work, moving to a new province involves overcoming a lot of red tape in order to have their qualifications recognised. In order to help new teachers “from away” to navigate through the bureaucracy, QPAT has produced a checklist of requirements (in both English and French) in order for teachers “from away” to obtain a brevet or Québec Teaching Permit (QTP).

It is the teacher’s contractual responsibility to submit the required documents without delay in order to become qualified. Sometimes, I’ve noted that new teachers are confused between the documents that they need to provide the school board in connection with their salaries and contracts and the documents that they must provide the MELS in order to become legally qualified in this province. It is important to distinguish between a teacher’s obligations to his/her school board, as the employer, and the MELS.

Of course, new teachers should not forget QPAT’s excellent publication: New Teacher’s Handbook (English | French).

Questions? Please contact Ray Venables, President.

Have a good union day!

Oct 212012

The Quebec Provincial Association of Teachers has lent its support to the Every Teacher project, a national study designed to identify and make widely available the collective expertise that exists among Canadian teachers on inclusive education practices for sexual and gender minority students. This study will enable us to learn what educators think about the climate of Canada’s schools for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, Two Spirit, or questioning (LGBTQ) students; which approaches to inclusion of these students seem to work, and in what contexts, and which don’t; what supports educators in doing this work, and what holds us back. Results will be made widely available throughout the school system.

Completing the Every Teacher survey will take approximately 15-20 minutes. Participation is possible between October 11 and mid-February 2013, but we encourage members to participate as soon as possible in order to reduce the need for follow-up reminders.

All members of teacher organizations are encouraged to participate, including education assistants, counselors, and teachers with administrative responsibilities.

Members and other educators who have not received an emailed invitation can request one by contacting the research team Members can also request an invitation by contacting

Every teacher organization in English Canada has enthusiastically agreed to support this project. QPAT is proud to be among them. Teachers across the country are moving strongly to improve school climate for LGBTQ students; students with LGBTQ parents; heterosexual students who are also homophobically bullied; and the 58% of heterosexual students who are distressed by homophobic elements of school culture. The Every Teacher project team is led by Dr. Catherine Taylor at The University of Winnipeg in partnership with The Manitoba Teachers’ Society. The project is funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.