Union drops complaints against trip organizers
Nova Scotia’s teachers union has backed away from threats to discipline two school administrators and a teacher who organized a student trip to Vimy Ridge last year despite a work-to-rule campaign.
Eartha Monard, principal of Dartmouth High School since 2008, said she received a letter last month indicating her union local was seeking sanctions based on her efforts to keep the trip going despite labour unrest last year.
More than 80 students took part in the trip for the 100th anniversary of the First World War battle, which required extensive planning and fundraising, with students and parents making significant financial commitments.
Monard said in an interview she understood she faced possible sanctions ranging from a reprimand to being temporarily dropped from the union.
However, the union said Monday the local has dropped its complaint against Monard, along with the former vice principal, Randolph Sullivan, and a teacher.
And in a followup email, Liette Doucet, the president of the union representing Nova Scotia’s 9,600 public school teachers, said the union apologized.
“In the end I think the local made the appropriate decision. We are pleased this has been resolved and appreciate that it has been difficult for all involved. While I cannot speak about the details of the complaint or why it was dropped, we apologize for any tension this process has caused,’’ the union leader wrote.
Monard said she’s pleased by the union’s decision to end the complaint, which never went to a discipline committee.
“The main thing is they’ve dropped it and we’re all moving forward,’’ she said.
Planning for the Vimy trip started before the Dec. 5, 2016, work-to-rule campaign, when the union called on teachers to drop extracurricular activities to protest the provincial government’s contract bargaining tactics.