News Bulletin 3, October 20, 2017

 National Health and Safety Week: Prevention
Oct 15 to 21 2017 is National Health and Safety Week (http://semainesst.org/). The focus this year is on prevention. In the context of health and safety, prevention is a daily challenge in a more and more competitive world, where productivity has become an obsession.  In our college life, small steps you may consider:

  • Be kind to yourself.
  • Be kind and respectful to each other, as we are all under a lot of stress.

50 Years of CEGEPs: Photo project
Jérôme Fortin, Quebec artist and visual art teacher at Cegep of Vieux Montréal has accepted, in collaboration with Fneeq, to create a work that would commemorate the 50 years of Cegeps in Quebec.  It will be composed of photos from the past from teachers throughout the province and it will be unveiled in the Spring 2018.

  • Please submit us photos you may have that capture the Vanier spirit from any time in our history so that we can send our selections to the Fneeq project.

Seniority List
The October 2017 seniority list came out last Friday, Oct. 13.  It is every teacher’s responsibility to verify his or her seniority in the 30 days from that time, after which it becomes official.

  • Please check, in order to allow us to correct any error before it is too late.

New Teachers
If you haven’t already done so, please drop by our office, C101, in order to become VCTA members.  You only need to pay a one-time fee of $2, and then you will be able to vote during General Assemblies and elections!

Medical Insurance Renewal 2018 (attachments: renewal 2018; renouvelement 2018)

  1. Rates as of January 1, 2018
    Good news! There will be no increase in premiums on January 1, 2018.
  2. Changes as of January 2018
    • $1,000 reimbursement per hearing aid, maximum $2,000 per 36-month period;
    • Reimbursement of medical certificates at the rate provided by the plan member’s Module: $40 per certificate, maximum $500 per year;
    • Homeopathic treatments are no longer covered
  3. You can opt for more coverage by asking Human Resources during the month of November.
    You can opt for less coverage if you have been contributing to the higher coverage for 3 years
  4. Bill 92 – New itemised drug bills
    The invoice must now show the following items separately:

    • Cost of the compound (the drug) -This is the same for all pharmacists
    • Wholesaler’s profit margin -This is the same for all pharmacists
    • Pharmacists’ professional fees -The pharmacist’s professional fees include the price for filling the prescription, the pharmacist’s profit margin and any other fees charged by the pharmacist. These may vary considerably between pharmacists – so shop around..

Asbestos Update
Those of you present at the last VCTA General Assembly will remember that the VCTA Executive indicated we would contact the CNESST to ask them to come to the college and inspect the renovation site. The CNESST told us that they would not come to inspect the site unless someone identified a specific concern or problem. The inspector, however, did say that we could take pictures of the site and send them, which we did. If teachers notice an accumulation of dust in their offices, or if they have reason to believe that the negative pressure machinery is not working, they should inform the College and the Union. Any complaints should be directed to Loïc Boyer is the College’s current Health and Safety Officer and ”cc” the VCTA.

Lise Bégin, Vanier’s Director of Administrative Services, has agreed to make the asbestos register available to all employees for consultation in H-201. The register should contain information related to the location of materials and products which have been the object of asbestos verification, information regarding the presence and type of asbestos, and the nature and date of work done on materials and products containing asbestos. Having this information may prove useful as renovation continues throughout the college.

Finally, we sent an access to information request to the DG to ask for copies of the daily air-quality test results and documents produced by WSP in relation to the renovation. The DG agreed to this request. We sent pictures of the test results that were available at the construction site to our air-quality specialist at the CSN and await her analysis.

It is unfortunate that teachers may only get complete information regarding the renovation in A-500 after the fact, a concern which we raised with the College. Nonetheless, we think it is critical to get as much information as we can so as to demonstrate to the College that we will persist in having teachers informed.

The VCTA Web-site
Check out our web-site for FAQ, the latest news on education, council meetings and more:  www.thevcta.qc.ca

The paradox and problem of budget cutbacks and increased administration hiring across the pond parallels the CEGEP situation here in Quebec.  It is clear how Quality Assurance conforms to this skewed “educational” model based on business strategies:

“The meaningless tasks and faux-business strategies prioritised by British universities have skewed their real role.”

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/aug/21/universities-broke-cut-pointless-admin-teaching

  Universities are broke. So let’s cut the pointless admin …

www.theguardian.com

Universities are broke. So let’s cut the pointless admin and get back to teaching André Spicer

News Bulletin 2, October 11, 2017

Fair Trade Coffee
The VCTA Executive would like to assure all members that as a union who cares deeply about fair treatment of employees, we have long offered teachers fair trade coffee for your drinking pleasure in both lounges.  Enjoy your coffee and feel good about it too.

Quality Assurance
The Quality Assurance Committee (a subcommittee of Association Council) held its first meeting of the academic year 2017-2018.  The term ‘Quality Assurance’ refers to a vision that uses quantitative measures of risk assessment and continuous improvement to deliver quality manufactured products.  This approach has recently found its way into the management of educational institutions worldwide.  Since what we offer as teachers is not a ‘product’ but an education, teachers’ unions across the province have argued for different values and a more civic vision.  The committee will be meeting regularly so as to be able to inform teachers on how best to prepare for any actions by the Administration that would reduce education to a quantifiable product.

Asbestos A-500 (please see link below:  SST)
The VCTA Executive has continued to consult with our air quality specialist at the CSN as we get more information from the College with regard to renovation in A-500. The College confirmed at a meeting of CRT (Labour Relations Committee) on September 28th that they had engaged an engineering consulting firm to make recommendations in relation to asbestos removal. It was the report from this firm, containing recommendations and procedures, that the VCTA Executive sent to our air quality specialist at the CSN last week. Our specialist found the report very thorough and has been advising us as we continue to follow up with the College.

The College has stated that the firm with which they have consulted is also doing daily air-quality testing. The VCTA Executive has asked to have the results of these tests, but the College has refused to give them to us. The CNESST and our air quality specialist at the CSN have informed us that there are other ways to obtain the results, and the Executive is exploring all possible ways of doing so.  The College also has not made its asbestos register available to all employees. The CNESST has informed us that we can make an official complaint, and we have begun the complaint process.

Finally, teachers should know that we have a right to refuse to perform particular work if we have reasonable grounds to believe that the performance of that work would expose us to danger to health, safety or physical well-being, or would expose another person to a similar danger. Specifically, we have the right to refuse to work if we think that asbestos is escaping from the construction work sites, either from the area sealed or through the ventilation, if they see dust in their office in the areas that have asbestos, if the machine to take air out (for the negative pressure) stops.

The VCTA Executive will continue to follow up on the renovation work and will keep you informed of any developments.

SST_Construction démolition rénovation

Teacher-Student Relationships and the Revised Code of Conduct, September 2017
In the latest Academic Council Meeting, a new article, 4.3, concerning abuse of power and sexual relationships was passed.  It recognizes that since all college employees are in a position of authority over students, employees must act to avoid any situations that might constitute an abuse of power or trust, specifically, any employee/student relationship of a romantic or sexual nature. Be aware that this violation will result sanctions, up to and including immediate dismissal.

In addition, this position is consonant with the FNEEQ motion  passed during the Conseil Federal December 7-9, 2016, the summary of which the VCTA shared in our February 2017 News Bulletin #8, provided here below for your convenience:
Teacher-Student Relationships:  FNEEQ
Reflections on teacher-student relationships began at the FNEEQ Congress in May 2015. Concerns were voiced that such relationships cause problems, not only posing serious legal and ethical consequences, but also threaten the very integrity of the teaching relationship… resulting in passing the following motion (here translated):

It is recommended that the Federal Counsel:

  1. reaffirm its position against violence, discrimination and sexual harassment;
  2. affirm that, for ethical reasons, it is inappropriate for someone in a position of teaching and authority to have an intimate relationship, either romantic or sexual, with a  student;
  3. call on affiliated unions to proscribeall intimate relationships, romantic or sexual, of those in a position of teaching or authority with students;

Committee Selection
At the Association Council Meeting of Sept. 28, 2017 the following motion was passed to replace the first-come first-serve criterion for the VCTA selection of teacher representatives on committees:

That Association Council approve the following for the Committee Selection Criteria

(This does not apply to elected and designated positions on Academic Council, Association Council or CRT)

-begin with a call-for volunteers, with a 72 hour response period

-random selection (names drawn from a hat)

-when expertise or experience is deemed necessary by the VCTA executive, the VCTA executive reserves the right to choose members after seeking advice from Association Council.

Seniority Lists
Heads up!  The seniority lists will be published next week.  It is your responsibility to verify them so that if there is an error, we can rectify it. You have thirty days to do so –after which it will be official.

World Teachers Day Oct. 5, 2017 and the Fondaction Table
Bagels were so popular this year to celebrate World Teachers Day that we ran out early.  Our apologies to anyone who missed out.  Also, Maxime Bournival, the Fondaction representative who was explaining some retirement savings options, was also so appreciated by teachers that we will try to arrange to bring him back next semester.

ASSOCIATION COUNCIL AGENDA

Thursday, October 12, 2017
ROOM F-216 at 1:15 pm – 3:45 pm

AGENDA

  1. Approval of Agenda
  2. Approval of Minutes – September 28, 2017
  3. Business Arising
    1. Asbestos
  4. Reports & Announcements
  5. New Business
    1. Quality Assurance
    2. 2017-2018 FNEEQ/CSN
  6. Members’ Concerns
  7. Varia
  8. In camera
  9. Adjournment

 REMINDER: BRING YOUR OWN COFFEE CUP OR GLASS

PLEASE NOTE: THIS MEETING IS OPEN TO THE VCTA MEMBERSHIP

World Teachers’ Day

TODAY – Thursday Oct. 5, 2017 is World Teachers’ Day.  To celebrate your hard work and all your good energy, we are offering bagels and cream cheese in the union lounges, Main building and N Building, from 10 am -1 pm.  Drop by and enjoy!

Also, in the Main building lounge, C-101, we will have a table from Fondaction, the CSN’s labour sponsored fund. Come by to get more information!

 Happy Teachers’ Day and Happy Retirement Planning!

GENERAL ASSEMBLY AGENDA

A REMINDER:  PLEASE CALL 7053  TO RESERVE

Wednesday, October 4, 2017
F216 during UB – 12:30 pm

AGENDA

  1. Approval of Agenda
  2. Approval of Minutes – September 13, 2017
  3. Business Arising
  4. Reports & Announcements
    1. Asbestos concerns A500
  5. New Business
    1.  Insurance
  6. Varia
  7. Adjournment

  MOTIONS:

  1. The VCTA General Assembly moves that there be a freeze in premiums (0 %) for all coverages for the 2018 renewal, subject to any amendments in the contract ①.
  2. The VCTA General Assembly moves that the insurance contract be amended so that it covers the elected officials of the FNEEQ who used to be covered by a group insurance policy that was terminated because of their union activities.
  3. The VCTA General Assembly moves that the following additions be made to the contract:
    1. Reimbursement of $1000 for each hearing aid or reimbursement up to a maximum of $2000 per 36-month period (with no increase in premiums);
    2. Reimbursement of medical certificates at the percentage for the module for a reimbursement of $40 per certificate up to a maximum of $500 per year (involving an increase of 0.1% for each module) ①;
    3. Reimbursement of up to 1000$ for each auditory prosthetic or reimbursements up to 2000$ per 36 month period (no increase to premiums).
  4. The VCTA General Assembly moves that the following additions be made to the contract:
    1. Delete coverage for homeopathy: reimbursement for appointments with homeopaths and for homeopathic medications (no reduction in premiums).

ASSOCIATION COUNCIL AGENDA

Thursday, September 28, 2017
ROOM F-216 at 1:15 pm – 3:00 pm

AGENDA

  1. Approval of Agenda
  2. Approval of Minutes – August 31, 2017
  3. Business Arising
    1. Committee Selection Criteria
  4. Reports & Announcements
  5. New Business
    1. Insurance
  6. Members’ Concerns
    1. Asbestos concerns A500
  7. Varia
  8.  Adjournment

REMINDER: BRING YOUR OWN COFFEE CUP OR GLASS

PLEASE NOTE: THIS MEETING IS OPEN TO THE VCTA MEMBERSHIP

ACADEMIC COUNCIL AGENDA

Friday, September 15, 2017, 1:00 p.m.
Room F-216

  1. Welcome and Introductions
  2. Approval of the Agenda
  3. Approval of the Minutes of May 26, 2017
  4. Business Arising from the Minutes
    1. Recommendations of Academic Space Committee (A-C. Banville
    2. Indigenous Protocol (A-C. Banville)
    3. Program Management Policy Implementation (A-C. Banville, I.Delisle)
    4. By-Law No. 3 (A-C. Banville)
  5. Main Business
    1. Items for Recommendation
    2. Election of 2017-2018 Alternate Vice-Chair (M. DeNora)
    3. Agreements of Understanding
      1. Jinzhong Vocational and Technical College (A. Perout)
      2. Shandong Foreign Trade Vocational College (A. Perout)
      3. Université de Versailles Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines (A. Perout)
    4. St.Petersburg Agreement – Cancellation (A. Perout)
    5. Code of Conduct (M. Magnan, G. Iaboni)
    1. Items for Consultation
      1. 2017-2018 Academic Council Committees (A-C. Banville)
      2. 2017-2018 Academic Council Items (A-C. Banville)
  6. Reports, Announcements and Correspondence
    1. 2017-2018 Academic Dean’s Items (A-C. Banville)
    2. June 2017 Board of Directors Meeting (A-C. Banville)
    3. Fall 2017 Enrollment Update (T. Ingerman)
    4. AQPC Conference (I. Delisle)
    5. Learning Commons Update (H. Kavallos)
    6. International Students (A. Perout)
    7.  2016-2017 Teaching Excellence (A-C. Banville)
  7. Adjournment