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Falcon to recognize and reward BC’s top teachers and schools

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Vancouver, BC: Liberal leadership candidate Kevin Falcon today proposed a strategy to reward great teachers and improve educational outcomes for BC students.

Falcon supports the development of a Master Teacher Incentive Program, similar to one being implemented nationally by Australia’s new Labour Government.

“BC has a great education system powered by thousands of very dedicated professional teachers and administrators. But every parent and student knows who the exceptional, innovative educators are,” said Falcon. “Government needs to recognize and reward those teachers, and encourage them to share their expertise and methods with their peers.”

Falcon said he would work with teachers, administrators, parents, and community leaders to develop a set of criteria for identifying innovative educators across BC. Recognized Master Teachers would then help mentor other educators in the system to encourage excellence in the system.

“The criteria could include peer evaluation, parental input, improved test results, extra-curricular school activities, and other suggestions that may arise,” said Falcon. “The principle, however, is clear: excellence in teaching should be rewarded and encouraged, and I make no apology for believing that our best teachers should be recognized.”

As Premier, Falcon would also support the development of a Model School Incentive Program that potentially rewards schools for improvements in areas such as grades, attendance, graduation rate, trades programs, and arts.

“We should never be afraid of innovation and learning what works in other jurisdictions,” said Falcon.

Falcon has a keen interest in education for several reasons, including some very close family and friends who work in the school system.

“A high quality education system is the best anti-poverty initiative and the best health program government can advance,” said Falcon.

The BC Liberal Party leadership vote will take place on February 26, 2011.

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Trevor Pancoust