Know Your Rights and Responsibilities
The general purpose of education is the full development of the potential of each individual. Society, of which teachers are a part, establishes the goals of education and the organizational framework within which formal education occurs. In its broadest sense, teaching is a process which facilitates learning. Formal teaching activities are based on the specialized application of the learning process adapted to meet the educational needs of the learner. A teacher has professional knowledge and skill gained through formal preparation and experience. A teacher provides professional service to pupils by diagnosing their needs and by planning, selecting, and using methods and evaluation procedures designed to promote learning.
In Alberta, a teacher is a member of The Alberta Teachers’ Association (Association). Membership in The Alberta Teachers’ Association and support of it through the provision of fees is beneficial to the cause of education and the teaching profession in Alberta.
The Alberta Teachers’ Association holds that teachers are entitled to the following rights and must accept the corresponding responsibilities.
This Declaration of Rights and Responsibilities for Teachers forms part of the Constitution of The Alberta Teachers’ Association.
Rights and responsibilities are often viewed as a whole in balance with other rights and responsibilities. Individual rights of are often viewed in balance with individual responsibilities. Similarly, individual rights have to be balanced against the rights of others and the rights and responsibilities of the collective.
While individual teachers may hold diverse opinions on specific issues, the Association is not responsible to represent all of those opinions. The Association is guided by policy, that has been established through democratic processes. Democratically elected and appointed teacher representatives who attend the Annual Representatives’ Assembly (ARA) are the voice and vote of their local’s teachers and therefore have the power and authority to establish Association policy and direction.
In Alberta, a teacher is a member of the Alberta Teachers’ Association. The Association holds that while teachers are entitled to professional rights, they also must accept the corresponding responsibilities as set out in both legislation and Association policy, as directed by the Annual Representative Assembly. #WEAREATA
Short on time? Want to cut straight to the chase? Attend a brief Zoom meeting to have your money questions answered!
Moneytalk: Q&A is a half-hour session dedicated to your financial questions. Here are just a few examples of those burning questions you’d love to have answered:
Should I purchase an RRSP, or should I go with a TFSA instead?
How does the Home Buyers’ Plan work?
Wait—the government will give me money for my RESP?
Capital Estate Planning—the people who brought you the ATA Financial Wellness sessions last year—will provide expert advice on these questions and more.
Rick Harcourt, Professional Financial Advisor, manages the ATA Voluntary Benefit Program for Capital Estate Planning. He has been the featured speaker at the ATA Financial Wellness sessions and provincewide pre-retirement workshops.
The Moneytalk: Q&A session is free and will be held 4:00–4:30 pm on November 24, 2021, and February 9, 2022.
Register for the date of your choice here:
November 24, 2021: Register here. February 9, 2022: Register here.
A Zoom link will be sent to all registrants closer to the date of the session.
It’s Moneytalk: Q&A—a session dedicated to your financial questions, to be held November 24, 2021, and February 9, 2022. For November 24, 2021, register here. For February 9, 2022, register here. #WEAREATA
What’s the Difference Between Assignable and Instructional Time?
A ½-hour duty-free break every day is not assignable (cannot be at the beginning or the end of the day).
Which teachers have assignable time limits?
Any teacher whose primary function is to provide instruction to students is subject to the applicable teacher instructional and assignable time limits. This includes lead teachers and teachers who are in receipt of an allowance but who do not have administrative designations. Part-time teachers are prorated on the average instructional time of a teacher at that school. Refer to your collective agreement for times, or call Teacher Employment Services at 1‑800‑232‑7208.
Which teachers are not subject to assignable time limits?
These are teachers with administrative designations whose primary function is not instruction, including those teachers who have principal in their titles (that is, principals, vice-principals, assistant principals). Central office staff (for example, psychologist, director of special education, interschool coordinator) may not be subject to the time limits, provided that their primary function is not instruction of students.
Which teachers are subject to the instructional time limits?
• Any teacher whose primary function is to provide instruction to students is subject to the applicable teacher instructional and assignable time limits.
• This includes lead teachers and teachers in receipt of an allowance but who do not have administrative designations.
• This also includes teachers who are supervising the instruction provided by another certificated teacher or nonteacher (for example, preservice teacher or instructor of students in the Registered Apprentice Program).
Tracking instructional time is important, especially if teachers are required to cover teaching assignments of absent colleagues. Teachers should calculate their own assignable and instruction hours by using the two calculators here. #WEAREATA
Changes to Employment Insurance
The employment insurance system has been amended as of September 26, 2021. Many of the key changes will apply only to new claims made for benefits beginning September 26, 2021 and are still pandemic related.
Teachers applying for employment insurance (EI) will need to have worked a minimum number of hours to qualify for benefits. Previously, teachers needed 600 hours to qualify for maternity or parental benefits; if they applied for regular benefits, the number of insurable hours required to qualify varied in different parts of the province, based on local labour market conditions.
Over the last year, all new EI applicants received a one-time hours top-up to help them qualify, but this requirement has been amended. As a result, teachers will need to have accumulated 420 hours of insurable employment during their qualifying period to be eligible for EI benefits until September 24, 2022.
Further, to access EI sickness benefits, teachers will now be required to submit a medical certificate proving they are ill and unable to work. The requirement was waived temporarily over the last year because of COVID-19.
Maternity and Parental Benefits
Employment Insurance maternity and parental benefits entitle teachers to receive 55 per cent of their earnings, to a maximum of $595 per week. If a teacher’s claim starts between September 26, 2021 and November 20, 2021, the teacher will receive at least $300 per week before taxes, but could receive more. For extended parental benefits, teachers will receive at least $180 per week before taxes, but could also receive more. The weekly floor is planned to apply to claims made between September 26 and November 20.
No one with an existing EI claim will experience any changes to the value or duration of their benefits under these new rules.
Recent changes to Employment Insurance will affect Alberta teachers as of September 26, 2021. Teachers willneed to have accumulated 420 hours of insurable employment during their qualifying period to be eligible for EI benefits until September 24, 2022. #WEAREATA
Updates from ATA Provincial