Newsletter April 2013

Staffing Time Again!

David

By: Dave Najduch, President

The following is an updated version of the staffing article provided in the WTA newsletter on a year to year basis.

Once again we are approaching the end of the school year and I know some of you are waiting for the staffing process to begin. If you are thinking about a move to a different school in the division for the fall, you might want to review the following information.

The dates and times provided in the table below have come from the WSD and reflect those which the division will use as it moves through the staffing process over the coming months.

WSD Staffing Timelines
Thursday , May 2 1st Ad in Schools
Monday , May 6 12:00 p.m. Deadline for Applications
Tuesday, May 21 2nd Ad in Schools
Thursday, May 23 12:00 p.m. Deadline for Applications
Tuesday , June 4 3rd Ad in Schools
Wednesday, June 5 4:00 p.m. Deadline for Applications

Things to remember:

  1. If your employment situation is such that you must get a change for the coming school year, you need to write a confidential letter to the Assistant Director of Human Resources ASAP asking for the change and providing a brief explanation as to why this must occur. If you would like assistance in preparing the letter, please contact me at the WTA office (831-7104 or pres@wta.mb.ca). In writing the letter, you accept the fact the division may place you in a different program for the fall without the opportunity of applying for specific jobs. Writing the letter is not a short cut to obtaining interviews through the staffing process.
  2. Every year at staffing time there is some confusion about school intention sheets. Members feel that if they indicate on a school intention sheet that they are not applying for positions and a great job is advertised in the bulletin, they can not apply. This is not accurate. An intention sheet is simply that, at the time you are completing it, I would always indicate that my intention is to stay in the building / program. If something comes out in the job postings that I am interested in later, my intention has now changed and I am free to apply for the positions that are posted.
  3. Surplus Declarations: It is our understanding that if a staff member in a building is to be declared surplus, it should be occurring prior to the first “Ad” being posted to the schools. If declarations are taking place after the postings have come out, please contact the WTA office.
  4. The “ad” is actually the list of open positions that the WSD has available and would like individuals to apply for. The electronic version of the ad will be available on Employee Connect on the days indicated in the table. If you are thinking about a move, check the posting.
  5. Our office always receives questions about who can and cannot apply for posted positions in the bulletins. If you are a person on a permanent fulltime contract you are able to apply and will be considered for positions. If you are a part time permanent person, you can apply for the same percentage position or you can look for an increase in contracted time through the staffing process. Term teachers and substitutes are not able to apply for the posted positions.
  6. Your application should consist of a current resumes and covering letter. You can start working on the resume now, be sure to included teaching and other experience. The resume is the general description of who you are and the experience you bring to the table as teacher. The covering letter is job specific and should be written for the position you are applying for and be included with the resume. Both the resume and covering letter need to be sent to HR.
  7. Don’t miss the deadline (date and times indicated). The staffing process moves very quickly and many people are moved, you need to have your application in on time to be considered.
  8. Don’t apply for a large numbers of jobs. Be selective. I would always advise members to pick the two or three positions you really want verses applying for ten or fifteen positions at a time. Try to tailor what you apply for to what you teach and have a background or training in. This will increase the likelihood of obtaining an interview.
  9. If you get an interview for a new position, practice some responses to some sample questions with a family member or trusted colleague. Many teachers have not been interviewed in a long time and it is helpful to reflect on what questions you might be asked and how you will respond to them. In practicing your responses it is also helpful to hear yourself answering the questions and make adjustments to your responses based on the feedback provided to you.
  10. Contact the WTA office (831-7104 or email) and speak to me if you have:
    • applied for positions over the last few years and never received an interview.
    • had a difficulty with the electronic posting system.
    • had a difficulty or concern about the staffing process this year. It is best for our office to hear about these situations as they occur rather than trying to address issues in September of October of next year.

Spring has arrived…

By: Nathan Martindale, Vice-President

Spring has technically arrived, but looking out the window, it’s hard to tell this year! I’m sure by this time next month, we will be basking in the warmth of the sun and all of the snow and cold will be long forgotten! Hang in there, it WILL get warmer!

Workplace Safety and Health Update

As mentioned in last month’s article, a number of changes have been made to the WTA Checklists on Violence and Harassment. The updated versions can be found here: https://www.wta.mb.ca/forms.html. If you feel that you have been harassed or have been the victim of violence in the workplace, use these checklists to guide you through the complaint process. In addition, please contact the WTA Office for assistance in completing the forms and filing a complaint with the Division.

We know that there are many incidents of harassment and violence that go unreported every day. It is extremely crucial that these incidents are reported and a formal complaint is made. The Workplace Safety and Health Act outlines three basic rights that workers have in a workplace. These rights are clearly outlined by SAFEWork Manitoba:

  • The right to know about hazards in the workplace, and what precautions must be taken to prevent injuries or illness from these hazards
  • The right to participate in safety and health activities at the workplace, including involvement in the joint workplace safety and health committee, or as a worker representative
  • The right to any task that the worker has reasonable grounds to believe is dangerous to his/her safety and health or the safety and health of other persons

Along with these rights, there are important responsibilities placed on the worker. One of these responsibilities requires workers to report incidents of violence or harassment in the workplace. Aside from the legal and legislative requirement to report, workers need to report these incidents so that investigations can be conducted into the causes and the problem remedied. If incidents are not reported, and the worker continues to place him/herself in an unsafe work situation then the problem will most likely get worse over time. One day an incident may be classified as a near miss, but can escalate into a violent incident the next day. One day, the injury is a cut or a bruise, but the next day a broken bone or worse.

WTA members need to undergo a change in attitude and thinking regarding workplace violence. You were not hired to be spit on, punched, kicked or scratched. You were not hired to have chairs thrown at you. These incidents occur every day in our workplaces, and we as a collective group need to report the incidents. You have the right to a safe workplace, and reporting these incidents of violence will have a major impact in achieving this right.

Coming Soon… Your Retirement Reception

By: Terry Willerton, Reception Committee Chair

When…June 12th 2013

Where…Shaarey Zedek Synagoque

 

More Information to follow…

Contact Terry Willerton at: twillerton@wta.mb.ca

 

General Information

Re: Manulife EHB Travel

Manulife for active WTA members

“As long as the insured, i.e. an active teacher, is under age 65 – the spouse’s age is not relevant.” (i.e. they may be over age 65) “The coverage in place as a ‘Class A’ employee applies to all eligible dependents too. It is only the ‘insured’s’ age that matters as far as the coverage goes.” This means that active teachers’ spouses/partners over the age of 65 have unlimited travel if the active teacher is under 65 years of age.

Electoral Units not represented at the March Council meeting:

Argyle, Carpathia, DLC, Dufferin, General Wolfe, George V, Interdivisional Student Services, J.B. Mitchell, Kelvin, Kent Road, Lansdowne, Lord Selkirk, Luxton, Montrose, Pinkham, Principal Sparling, River Elm, Shaughnessy Park, Substitutes, Wellington, Weston and WAEC – 700 Elgin Avenue