The question of teachersʼ obligation to attend in-service or professional development during the summer has been the subject of recent discussions between the Department of Education and the New Brunswick Teachersʼ Federation.
Indeed the NBTF administrative staff has received several calls in the past few weeks from teachers inquiring as to their obligations with regards to attending professional development during the summer.
The following, is the Federationʼs position:
- Teacher participation at in-service during the summer is discretionary, thus, teachers cannot be required to attend.
- A teacher should not be disadvantaged by not attending in-service during the summer (Article 54 states that a teacher will not suffer discrimination by exercising a right under the Collective Agreement). If a teacher is currently teaching one of these courses without the training, they should not have their assignment changed, if their work performance is satisfactory. The Employer should make attempts to provide this in-service at another time for teachers who cannot attend during the summer.
- The Employer can, however, require that teachers who are not currently teaching these subjects have this training and the Employer can determine that teachers with the training will have priority for these assignments.
The Federation will continue discussions with the Department of Education and will advise teachers accordingly of the outcome of these discussions should new information become available. Teachers should communicate with a n administrative staff officer should they require further guidance.