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Date & Time

  • August 20, 2024 to August 23, 2024

Venue & Location

About this event

The BCTF Summer Leadership Conference aims to develop local leadership while focusing on BCTF priorities. The 2024–25 leadership priorities as established by the 2024 AGM are:

  • Provide opportunities so a diversity of members including early career teachers can connect and engage in advocacy, professional development, and collective action.
  • Fight for a bargaining structure that represents locals and advances members’ needs.
  • Directly pressure government to solve the teacher shortage.
  • Fight for working and learning conditions in which teachers’ workload issues and students’ social, emotional, and academic needs can be met.
  • Work within the Federation and collaborate with education partners, other unions, and the broader community to advance justice, truth and reconciliation, anti-racism, and anti-oppression in the face of environmental, social, and political forces.
  • Advancing the role of public education and the union as a catalyst for change in the climate emergency.
Please login to view meeting documents below (local officers only).

Monday, August 19, 2024
5:00–9:00 p.m.

Registration for delegates new to the role attending the discrete training on August 20, 2024

Tuesday, August 20, 2024

9:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.

Discrete training day for delegates new to the role:

  • New French Education local chairs
  • New Health and Safety reps
  • New local contacts for Aboriginal Education
  • New PD chairs
  • New Presidents, Sublocal Presidents, Local Officers Released 50% or more
  • New Social Justice contacts
  • New Teachers Teaching on Call contacts
  • New WLC reps/Bargaining chairs

5:00–9:00 p.m.

Registration for all delegates

7:00‒8:30 p.m.

Opening plenary for all delegates

Wednesday, August 21, 2024

Elective sessions

Thursday, August 22, 2024

9:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.







Discrete training day

  • French Education local chairs
  • Health and Safety reps
  • Local contacts for Aboriginal Education
  • Local PD chairs/PSA Council
  • Local Political Action contacts
  • Local Presidents, Sublocal Presidents, Local Officers Released 50% or more
  • Social Justice contacts
  • Teachers Teaching on Call contacts
  • WLC reps/Bargaining chairs

6:30–11:00 p.m.

Banquet and dance

Friday, August 23, 2024

9:30–11:00 a.m.

Closing session

Please note: Alternates are allowed, except for local presidents, sublocal presidents, and local officers released 50% or more.


9:00–10:30 A.M.

  1. AI in the Classroom: Exploring Ethics, Critical Thinking, and Creativity

    Presented by: Jessica Dmytruk, Lena Palermo, and Ilda Turcotte, BCTF members

    This elective is an introduction to Artificial Intelligence (AI). We will discuss the concepts of AI and digital literacy in relation to our professional responsibilities. Participants will be guided through an exploration of AI tools which can be used in the classroom for both students and teachers. Participants will walk away with “ready to implement” activities/templates. A personal digital device is recommended.

    Format: lecture: 50% / interactive: 50%

  2. Conference Co-ordination Crash Course—NOTE this elective occupies TWO consecutive sessions, from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

    Presented by: Kristina Preston, BCTF member

    Come cultivate confidence with this crash course on conference co-ordination! Join Kristina Preston, president and conference chair of myPITA, the largest of the 31 BCTF Provincial Specialist Associations, for a thorough outline of the timelines and considerations needed to plan and execute successful and rewarding professional development opportunities. Teachers are the masters of improvisation, but no one is born with the knowledge of organizing larger events. This session breaks down the process into logical, discrete steps with timelines and checklists to help you maintain BC's reputation as a leader in teacher-led professional development.

  3. Developing a Local Bargaining Communications Plan. Plus, How to Use Mailchimp!

    Presented by: Rich Overgaard, BCTF staff

    Learn the basics of a communications plan that can help locals engage and inform members during local bargaining or other campaigns. We will also explore tips, tricks, and best practices around using Mailchimp and creating good content that will grab members’ attention.

    Format: lecture: 50% / interactive: 50%        

  4. Harassment: Rules and Tools

    Presented by: Vivian Wan, Julia MacRae, and Renée Willock, BCTF staff

    What constitutes harassment? How can the union provide fair representation in member-to-member complaints? Participants will learn about the collective agreement processes for resolving harassment concerns as well as alternatives such as mediation and informal resolutions.

  5. Information Management for Local Offices

    Presented by: David Stange, BCTF staff

    What to do with all these paper files? My email is overwhelming! Which electronic files can I delete, and which must be kept? Participants will be provided with knowledge and tools to organize records in their local offices. Topics covered will include managing historical paper records, organizing electronic records (Word, PDF, etc.), managing email and reducing mailbox sizes, and discussing the digitization of paper records. Also, regulatory rules that affect the retention of records will be discussed, with a focus on privacy (PIPA) requirements.

    Format: lecture: 80% / interactive: 20%

  6. Investigations and Discipline

    Presented by: Arshia Sattari, Wesley Lui, Lori Jones, and Joanne Sutherland, BCTF staff

    This session will help you prepare for your role in assisting members in discipline investigations. These members need clarity about the processes they must participate in, and union advocates need to think strategically throughout. As well as helping members achieve the best outcome for themselves and their careers, we will consider what it means to meet the needs of members regarding equity and inclusion. You will leave with tools and strategies!

  7. Media 101

    Presented by: Amy Smart, BCTF staff       

    Talking to journalists can be intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. Media relations can be a great tool for raising awareness about the issues that matter most to your members and school community. In this session, you will learn how to identify a story, connect with media, hone your message, and stick to it so that it is heard—as well as tips for dealing with tough questions and topics to avoid.

    Format: lecture: 50% / interactive: 50%         

  8. Supporting 2SLGBTQIA+ Staff and Students

    Presented by: Christina Billingham and Bria Jupe, BCTF members

    This session is a 90-minute sampler of the regular three-hour PSI workshop. In supporting 2SLGBTIA+ staff and students, participants will have the opportunity to develop their knowledge of the experiences of queer staff and students and their unique needs and challenges within the context of regressive political movements and ideologies organizing against SOGI education. We will touch on tangible steps to take to ensure queer folks in your local and in your schools feel safe, seen, and supported.

    Format: lecture: 50% / interactive: 30% / hands-on: 20%

  9. Indigenous People Atlas and Giant Floor Map

    Presented by: Denise Hendry and Brian Coleman, BCTF members; and Charlene Bearhead, guest speaker

    This map shows the locations of Indigenous communities, residential schools, reserves, and more. Rather than showing political borders, Canada is broken up into Indigenous language groups. BCTF now has three of the Giant Floor Maps travelling the province and can be booked along with a new BCTF workshop. This session provides an experiential session with the map.

    Format: hands-on: 100%

  10. What is the Teacher Qualification Service (TQS)?

    Presented by: Camy Ng, BCTF member; and Carmen Woo, BCTF staff

    This session develops union leaders' knowledge of the Teacher Qualification Service (TQS). It will highlight the TQS's governance structures, frequently asked questions about categories and the application and appeals processes. It will also briefly touch on the TQS in relation to the regulatory structures of the BC Teachers’ Council, the Teacher Regulation Branch, and the Director of Certification.

    Format: lecture: 70% / interactive: 30%

11:00 A.M.–12:30 P.M.

  1. Build Community, Defeat Divisiveness, and Attain Action for Social Justice

    Presented by: Tara Ehrcke and Sarah Newton, BCTF members

    Does it feel like you’re banging your head against a wall when you have good ideas or important improvements to make your school community more sustainable? Learn how to use effective strategies to get action. Strategies of psychological persuasion work well in implementing environmental justice policies and actions. Instead of causing divisiveness or shame, build community and a sense of working for the greater good. Slight changes to rationales and language can have impressive results!

    Format: lecture: 50% / interactive: 50%

  2. Education Policy Update

    Presented by: Grahame Rainey, BCTF staff

    This session will provide updates on current Ministry of Education and Child Care education policy initiatives and related Federation advocacy. 

    Format: lecture: 70% / interactive: 30%         

  3. Le rôle et la fonction de la personne élue à la présidence locale de l’éducation en français (PLEF) et des représentant·e·s du français langue de travail ou langue première (FLTP)

    Presented by: Elizabeth (EJ) Rush, BCTF member, and Carmen Woo, BCTF staff                       

    This session offers School Union Representative Training (SURT) training in support of French Education Local Chairs and French as First or Working Language school representatives (FFWL) called “The Role and Function of the FFWL School Representative.”

  4. Legislation Overview—Key Statutes to Note

    Presented by: Gretchen Brown, George Serra, and Deb Morran, BCTF staff

    Most grievances involve enforcement of the collective agreement, but various pieces of legislation also provide protections for employees and the union. This session will review the most commonly utilized provisions related to teachers’ employment, including the Employment Standards Act, the Human Rights Code, the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, privacy legislation, and more. It will also address how to frame grievance letters when relying on these provisions.

  5. Media 101

    Presented by: Amy Smart, BCTF staff       

    Talking to journalists can be intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. Media relations can be a great tool for raising awareness about the issues that matter most to your members and school community. In this session, you will learn how to identify a story, connect with media, hone your message, and stick to it so that it is heard—as well as tips for dealing with tough questions and topics to avoid.

    Format: lecture: 50% / interactive: 50%         

  6. National Film Board

    Presented by: Ross Johnstone, guest speaker

    In this session, attendees will explore how to navigate the National Film Board site and share clips of the latest educational films available.

    Format: lecture: 50% / interactive: 50%

  7. Navigating the BCTF

    Presented by: Litia Fleming and Amber Mitchell, BCTF staff

    This session is aimed at providing a better understanding of the BCTF governance structures and will discuss the tools and resources available to help members navigate their roles within the BCTF.

    Format: lecture: 80% / interactive: 20%         

  8. Our Hopes and Dreams for Public Education in BC

    Presented by: Anna Chudnovsky, BCTF staff; Steve Cardwell and David Chudnovsky, guest speakers

    We know there are significant challenges facing schools today—overcrowding, teacher shortage, and inadequate support for meaningful inclusion, to name just a few. In the face of these issues, it can be difficult to find the opportunity to share our aspirations for our school system and student learning. Yet, it’s an important discussion to have. This interactive session will provide participants with the opportunity to learn more about the Institute for Public Education BC (IPE/BC) community research project, discuss their aspirations for teachers and students, and share their hopes and dreams for our public school system.

    Format: lecture: 10% / interactive: 90%         

  9. Teaching in a Time of Climate Grief

    Presented by: Irina Kosoric and Kristin Dorey, BCTF members

    This session is a 90-minute sampler of the regular three-hour PSI workshop. It will allow participants to be some of the first to try this new BCTF workshop, where we explore climate grief and engage with the emotional realities of this time of a climate emergency. There is a focus on reflection, activities that can be used in your classroom to navigate these topics, and modeling self-regulation.

    Format: lecture: 30% / interactive: 30% / hands-on: 40%

  10. Unionism and International Solidarity: Why it Matters

    Presented by: Alexandra Adhikary, Karen Andrews, Rozhin Emadi, and Annie Ohana, BCTF members; Larry Kuehn and Nadia Rovelo Bolívar, guest speakers

    Participants will deepen their understanding of international solidarity within the labour movement in this interactive session. Participants will have an opportunity to explore and learn from specific examples of the BCTF’s international partnerships. The session will strengthen member’s capacity to further engage with international solidarity work at a local and provincial level. (Note: Participants can also sign up to join an international solidarity lunch to continue the conversation after the session).

    Format: interactive: 100%  

2:30–4:00 P.M.

  1. Accommodation and Human Rights

    Presented by: Gretchen Brown, Arshia Sattari, Lori Jones, and Derek DeGear, BCTF staff

    This session will provide attendees with an introduction to the accommodation process for members. The session will explore the rights and responsibilities of the local, the member, and the employer framed by the Human Rights Code, case law, and the collective agreement. What are the obligations and entitlements? How does privacy factor?

  2. Collective Care

    Presented by: Heather Kelley and Litia Flemming, BCTF staff    

    Participants will explore collective care as a transformational way to bring folks together and work towards community and individual well-being and belonging. We will explore the existing structures that we can leverage for collective care, like bargaining. We will also talk about burnout, the challenges that all teachers face, and how to reframe wellness.

    Format: lecture: 40% / interactive: 30% / hands-on: 30%

  3. Crossroads

    Presented by: Deblekha Guin, Neffy Lubin, and Red Buffalo Nova Wipert, guest speakers

    This session will introduce participants to key elements of Crossroads Chronicles, a youth-created, story-centred interactive resource that helps students have capacities to have courageous conversations at the intersections of race, class, sexual orientation, and gender. This is a project from Access to Media Education Society, a BC non-profit that supports directly-impacted youth in making and sharing personal and socially transformative digital stories. Format: interactive: 40% / hands-on: 60%

  4. How You (and the Local) Can Support Early Career Teachers and Teachers Teaching on Call

    Presented by: Runa Bjarnason-Wilson, Dennis Mousseau, and Nicole Jarvis, BCTF members

    In the current climate, there are myriad issues that affect teachers, especially recruitment and retention. In this session, we will explore the demographics of early career teachers and teachers on call. We will discuss what impacts retention and look at ways locals can support early career teachers and teachers teaching on call.

    Format: lecture: 50% / interactive: 50%

  5. Navigating WorkSafeBC: What You Need to Know to Support Members During a WorkSafeBC Claim

    Presented by: Luke Olver, BCTF staff

    This session will provide key information to attendees on topics such as the filing of WorkSafeBC claims, the claims process, and resolving issues with WorkSafeBC claims.

    Format: lecture: 85% / interactive: 15%

  6. Preparing a Grievance: From Filing to Referral

    Presented by: Vivian Wan, Wesley Lui, Suzanne Hall, and Joanne Sutherland, BCTF staff

    What is a grievance? What considerations should be taken into account at the various steps of the grievance process? In this session, participants will learn about, and discuss, the process of grievance handling, including writing grievance letters, maintaining a grievance file, and negotiating creative resolutions to alleged violations.

  7. Social Media

    Presented by: Matthew Yanko and Kaisha Gretzmacher, BCTF members

    This session is a 90-minute sampler of the regular three-hour PSI workshop designed to examine social media use in a way that educates about professional and ethical use, the landscape of social media sites, and skills for using specific sites as professionals and/or activists.

    Format: lecture: 40% / interactive: 30% / hands-on: 30%

  8. Strategies for Teaching Controversial Issues

    Presented by: TBA

    This session is a 90-minute sampler of the regular three-hour PSI workshop. Discussing controversial issues with students is an important part of social justice, the inquiry process, and building the skills for students to become active, engaged, and critically minded democratic citizens. This workshop provides practical classroom strategies for talking about controversial issues in a respectful manner.

    Format: lecture: 15% / interactive: 50% / hands-on: 35%

  9. Truth in Truth and Reconciliation Board Game

    Presented by: Brian Coleman, BCTF member, and James Darin Corbiere, guest speaker

    James Darin Corbiere Is an Anishinaabe educator and creator of the Truth in Truth and Reconciliation Board Game, a brand new, authentic, original Indigenous-made educational resource.  The game comes with a guidebook and graphic novel.  James will discuss the history, development, and how to use the game in educational settings.

    Format: lecture: 25% / interactive: 50% / hands-on: 25%

  10. Violence in the WorkplacePresented by: Michelle Chapman and Cindy Hewitt, BCTF members; and Michael-Don Borason, Deb Morran, Renée Willock, BCTF staff

    This session is a 90-minute sampler of the regular three-hour Health & Safety SURT workshop. Workplace violence is becoming a growing concern in the education sector. Every year an increasing number of workers in schools are victims of threats and violence in the performance of their jobs. This session explores the definition of violence, types of violence, and what is required to assess and plan to eliminate or reduce risks. The session discussions include risk assessments, safety plans, privacy issues, and the right to know, all with a focus on keeping workers safe.

Category: BCTF Events