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Questions about Pro-D Days in B.C. as tentative deal reached in dispute

WATCH ABOVE: Doug Strachan, Surrey School District’s communications manager, speaks on BC1

VANCOUVER – Now that a tentative deal has been reached in the current education dispute, the question on many parents’ minds is when are their children going to go back to school.

Teachers still have to vote on the deal and will be doing so on Thursday.

The Coquitlam School District has announced in a letter that if ratification occurs by Friday afternoon, then schools will be open for students on Monday, Sept. 22.

But for school districts that have Pro-D Days scheduled for Monday, many are wondering if those will be rescheduled or cancelled so the kids and teachers can get back in the classroom as soon as possible.

Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows had Pro-D Days scheduled for Monday, Sept. 22 and Tuesday, Sept. 23. Both of those have now been cancelled.

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Surrey’s School District also has a Pro-D Day scheduled for Monday, Sept. 22. and they have now announced if the deal is ratified they will be opening on Monday.

“The Pro-D Days, they’re part of the contract, I guess it’s possible that sort of thing might have been addressed in the discussions as far as resumption, so we’ll wait and see, but as it sits now, the Pro-D Day will go ahead on Monday,” says Doug Strachan, Surrey School District’s communications manager, previously.

Pro-D Days, or Professional Development Days are not a day off for the teachers, they are “considered to be a process of personal growth through programs, services and activities designed to enable members, individually or collectively, to enhance professional practice,” says the BCTF on their website.

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Strachan says the fact that there is a Pro-D Day on Monday in Surrey could have been a good thing for the teachers as it would give them a chance to get organized.

“Normally they have a few weeks prep time for the school year so that could prove to be quite advantageous,” he says.

The Sunshine Coast School District also has a Pro-D Day scheduled for Monday, but they have not confirmed if that is still going ahead.

Many school districts are also scheduled to have a Pro-D Day on Friday, Sept. 26. We will update this post when we hear more about those days.