New Agreement to Recruit Teachers for Rural Areas

Students in rural and remote school districts will benefit from a new agreement that will help districts recruit and retain teachers, Education Minister Shirley Bond announced today.

The BC Public School Employers’ Association (BCPSEA) and the BC Teachers’ Federation (BCTF) have reached an agreement as to how to disburse the Remote Recruitment and Retention Allowance designed to attract teachers to rural communities and retain teachers in those communities.

As part of the 2006 labour negotiations between BCPSEA and BCTF, funding was set aside to address recruitment and retention of teachers in rural and remote communities. This allowance has now been expanded to include more communities. Boards of Education will receive $3.5 million annually to help attract and retain teachers in remote communities.

Teachers who qualify for this allowance will receive a $2,200 yearly allowance and up to 3% on the salary grid. The Public Education Recruitment and Retention Support Committee, made up of representatives from BCPSEA and BCTF, have established eligibility criteria based on the size of the community, distance from major centres and medical care facilities, and whether accessibility is limited to ferry, airplane or train.