Letter: Childhood educators in peril

The following letter was sent to Minister of Education and Early Childhood Development Zach Churchill by Michelle Lohnes on behalf of early childhood educators, members of CUPE 4745. The later was also published in the Chronicle Herald on November 11, 2017. 

Over the last few days, we have noticed that the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development has provided surveys to be completed by child-care centre directors, board members and parents, to gather information about the impact of pre-primary programs that began in September.

The implementation of the pre-primary program has had a huge, negative impact on early childhood educators working in child-care centres across the province. Many of us are concerned about our future employment due to underfunding and the decline of enrolment in child-care centres. Our sector was already experiencing a recruitment and retention problem and these new programs have made a difficult situation even more challenging.

The ECEs of CUPE Local 4745 are deeply concerned that ECEs have not been included in this consultation process. ECEs hold a unique and specialized body of knowledge and education. We would like the opportunity to contribute our perspective on how the pre-primary program affects early childhood education in Nova Scotia.

Michelle Lohnes, vice-president, CUPE Local 4745