Sometimes, it’s difficult to be a PC supporter. Reading stories about rampant corruption within our healthcare system are hard to stomach, especially considering the sub-par care my mother received in her dying days only a few years ago. It took 3 months of doctor appointments (in her last 6 months of life) to get a diagnosis in our monopolistic system, yet when we flew to the US and paid for a diagnosis in a private clinic we got the diagnosis in 1 day. After she was diagnosed here in Canada, our shitty healthcare system failed to provide her with homecare; somebody forgot to order it for her. She died in emergency because there wasn’t enough space in the hospital for her. It was a horrendous experience that left me very upset.
But I didn’t blame the PC government for that. I understand that MLAs don’t run the healthcare system and I don’t think it’s a good idea for them to. The healthcare system should be run by health professionals, which for the most part, it is in Alberta.
It is the job of MLAs and Ministers to broadly oversee the system and to make adjustments when those who run the system day to day make mistakes. This is why Premier Redford took decisive action when the Merali story broke and why she is implementing more transparency in the way government officials report expenses.
The no zero policy story, which concluded yesterday with the firing of a high school teacher with 30+ years of experience is something I can’t believe our elected officials would allow to happen. The Redford Government deserves a zero for not stepping in to stop this.
I agree that our Education Minister should not get involved in the day to day decisions made within our education system. We have Trustees, Superintendents and other education professionals who are better suited to run our system at the local level.
But firing a teacher for giving HIGH SCHOOL students who don’t complete assignments zeros is far more offensive and egregious than any story of corruption or misuse of public dollars. And the fact that Alberta’s Education Minister is not planning to step in to correct this is shocking and unacceptable.
The no zero issue is about far more than a teacher who isn’t following policies or a local firing decision as the Minister has suggested. It’s about teaching values and principles. In a province where small business is the backbone of our economy and where our big businesses are global leaders, the values we teach with a no zeros policy is unacceptable. Failing is one of the most important components of success and teaching our future leaders about consequences is one of the best ways we can prepare them for the competitive and cruel world.
Like I previously said, it’s the job of MLAs and Ministers to broadly oversee the system and to make adjustments when those who run the system day to day make mistakes. A man lost his income because he would not follow the offensive no zero policy and the PC Government needs to make this right, just like they did recently regarding the expense claims of health officials.
Otherwise Albertans might decide to teach them that there are, in fact, consequences for not doing their work.