Editor: Earlier this week I heard a retired teacher being interviewed about retirees volunteering to work on various boards of directors. To have seniors working on these various boards is a good thing; the use of their wisdom can only be good for such volunteer organizations on P.E.I. My complaint here concerns another point mentioned by this teacher - she said she was still doing substitute teaching.
There are many younger folks raised here on P.E.I. who have earned their B.Ed. degrees either here at UPEI or at other Atlantic region universities who can’t find permanent employment.
Younger adults have to leave the Maritimes to find work and we see that our provincial pension plans must be changed because we don’t have enough young workers entering the work force here at home to make needed pension plan contributions.
It would seem to me that if the provincial government, the school boards and retired teachers were willing, many new young teachers that are attempting to build a career, start a family and buy a home could do so. Would it be possible to create permanent, floating teacher positions as a way to employ more of the new generation of teachers? Three pools of teachers would work at the three levels of elementary, intermediate and senior grades, with senior grade teachers preferably subbing in their specialized subject area only.
I see a very similar situation in the health care field, namely in the lab. Any day of the week there may be as many as six retired lab technologists working to cover sick leave, vacations, maternity leaves, etc. Permanent floating positions here could work well too.
To the retirees I say think about what you are doing. In the 1960s and 1970s many of you had your choice of jobs and have since had long rewarding careers. It is now time to step back and let your children and in some cases grandchildren, take their rightful place in the workforce. To the government, I say work harder at keeping our young educated adults here.