October 27th, big election day. Can you get involved without putting your job on the line? Of course you can. Now you can't run for trustee as a board employee but there's so much more you can do. No, you can't openly endorse candidates in your classroom but you can talk about election dates and polling locations in municipalities. Class discussions about elections in general are appropriate. Schools may even host all candidate debates. Staff are cautioned though that any endorsement of a candidate outside of their class should be seen as an individual action and not as a representative of the board. You are also allowed to friend candidates on social media accounts and share that information. While political signs are not permitted on board property, staff members are in no way restricted from displaying these signs on their own property. They are cautioned though to not use any board logos or letterhead if they are campaigning for a particular candidate.
A municipal election is a great time to get involved in your community. It's great to see more than one candidate running and it takes a lot to run a successful campaign. Make sure you vote, but if you can, try and do just a little bit more as well.
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The view from my desk, as Teacher Bargaining Unit President for D17 Simcoe