District cuts teachers jobs in Alberni

There will be eight fewer teachers and no drama program at Alberni District Secondary next year, ADTU President Ken Zydyk said

There will be eight fewer teachers and no drama program at Alberni District Secondary next year, Alberni District Teachers’ Union President Ken Zydyk said Wednesday.

There will be 17.5 fewer full-time equivalent (FTE) teachers across School District 70 next year, Zydyk said. The cuts are the result of declining student enrolment.

The bulk of the losses are at Alberni District Secondary School where eight pinks slips are expected to be handed out. “This is over half of the reduction,” Zydyk said.

It’s not just teachers that will be lost at the high school but programs as well. “It’s my understanding that drama and project based learning will not be offered next year and there may be others,” Zydyk said.

The cuts coincide with the Bill 22 removal of class size limits. Zydyk says he expects to see class sizes increase.

The district usually projects enrollment and calculates teacher decline at this time of year, then readjusts the figures when the final numbers are crunched in the fall. But that may not be the case this year.

“Yes, things could change, but I understand the enrollment numbers at ADSS are projected to be the same this fall,” Zydyk said.

SD 70 chair Larry Ransom couldn’t be reached for comment.

SD 70 trustee Glenn Wong confirmed that the district is losing teaching positions but could not confirm how many.

The district is projecting a four per cent decline in student enrollment next school year, and positions fluctuate based on that.

“We will be losing teachers, but there will be no shortage of teachers per student,” Wong said.

Wong couldn’t comment on any potential program losses.

reporter@albernivalleynews.com