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2021/22 Proposed Budget

April 27, 2021

The budget proposed by Provincial Executive Council (PEC) is just a step away from becoming the approved budget for the 2021/22 fiscal year. The final (and very important) step in this process is membership approval. On the Victoria Day long weekend, local delegates to the 104th Annual Representative Assembly (ARA) will convene virtually to consider, among other matters, the approval of the proposed budget.

This is the first ARA where the budget will be presented incorporating the Teacher Employment Services program area, which was the result of merging former Member Services and Teacher Welfare. While a budget is often viewed primarily as a financial document, the budget of the Alberta Teachers’ Association is also a reflection of the Association’s activities, programs and priorities for the upcoming year. During budget deliberations, PEC makes critical choices, balancing financial considerations and member feedback, before then presenting the proposed budget at ARA to delegates. At ARA, delegates, in addition to assessing the financial implications, will also examine the merit of the proposed programs and consider their value to members, to education and to the Association.

Based on feedback from locals demonstrating broad support for the programs and services included in the draft budget, Council is recommending no change to the current annual fee of $1,347 for the 2021/2022 fiscal year. The following pages provide highlights of new programs and completed or discontinued programs within the proposed 2021/22 budget.


Sample of proposed 2021/22 new initiatives

EdTechTeam Summits — Professional Development

Throughout the past year it has become increasingly clear that many of our members need support with implementing the best pedagogy when it comes to digital tools for teaching. Postpandemic, the Association and subgroups are likely to continue to make greater use of digital approaches to enhance professional development and support member engagement. Attending conferences such as this and having Association staff regularly learning about implementing such technologies into classrooms will allow them to be more responsive to emerging needs in the field.

Designation of associate co-ordinator — Professional Development:

The proposed 2021/2022 budget includes funds to designate a current executive staff officer as an associate coordinator. The role of the professional development coordinator has become sufficiently complex to warrant the designation of an understudy and assistant in the form of an associate coordinator. The work of this program area has increased significantly, as it has taken on responsibilities that go beyond developing and delivering professional development to members, and now also includes enhanced support for subgroups and analysis and response to government curriculum, inclusion and policy initiatives. This addition is also prudent risk management and a component of succession planning for Association staff leaders.

Mentorship program for Indigenous teachers — Professional Development:

This program will constitute an integral part of the Association’s larger commitment to reconciliation. This holistic mentoring program will provide a community of support for self-identified Indigenous teachers, leadership supports and experiences related to Indigenous education, and increased awareness of engagement opportunities to become more active in Association subgroups, specialist councils, convention boards and programs, including Association Instructor Corps and Indigenous Education PD Facilitator Corps.

Curriculum engagement — Professional Development:

Certainly, all matters related to curriculum have gained significant attention since it was released in March 2021. Through this budget initiative, the Association aims to conduct events that engage members in examining student evaluation and curriculum issues. Through such activities, strategic advice can be obtained from the field with respect to how best the Association can support members in these critical areas. This work will be particularly important in 2021/22 as piloting and subsequent implementation begin. Teachers will require both effective advocacy and effective support to respond to this challenge.

Understanding residential schools in Alberta — Professional Development:

In collaboration with the Association’s Indigenous Advisory Circle, this work will result in a publication on residential schools in Alberta to support teachers with implementation of the Indigenous-focused competencies in the Teaching Quality Standard and Leadership Quality Standard, and in alignment with the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada’s Calls to Action. This resource will provide increased understanding of residential schools in Alberta through historical knowledge and lived experiences shared through many Elders and Knowledge Keepers in the Association’s Indigenous Advisory Circle.

Teacher Qualification Services (TQS) — Professional Development:

The Association continues to hold over 45,000 member records on microfiche. Through this project, these will be digitized to better align with the overall modernization of TQS (Teacher Qualifications Services) processes. It will be important to maintain access to these older records in digital form to reduce dependency on a technology that is becoming increasingly unreliable, to align with best practices and to allow for more efficient support of members’ evaluation requests. Furthermore, digitization of records will support increased efficiency and in the longer term reduce costs and personnel requirements as well as support the implementation of a self-service web portal that will enhance service to members and prospective members.

Leadership essentials for leaders — Teacher Employment Services:

Through this initiative, the Association aims to offer an online leadership series of four to five speakers throughout the course of the school year. The intended audience of this series would be school and central office leaders and would focus on the administrative, legal, legislated and human resources aspects of the role. Therefore, in addition to the two-day workshop for school leaders who are new to their position, this new speaker series will engage school and system leaders in ongoing professional development offered by their professional association.

Addition of one executive staff officer/investigations — Government:

The number of investigations requested of the ATA and the complexity of these is growing year over year, while the staffing complement to oversee these has remained relatively constant. From Sept. to Dec. 2020, over 50 complaints were received, each requiring an investigation that tends to range from a few weeks to a number of months. Therefore, projections are that approximately 160–170 investigations arising from complaints received will take place during the year, with an estimated 45 hearings. As such, this addition of staff will enable the Association to meet its legislatively and professionally required responsibilities.

The proposed budget for the activities described above is $378,400.


Completed/discontinued initiatives

Work will be completed in the current fiscal year to develop a program of awareness with respect to the Association’s discipline and mediation services. Therefore, the budget line entitled Member Education, within the Teacher Employment Services program area, will not form part of the proposed budget for 2021/22.

The budget allocated for this activity in 2020/21 was $5,000.


Proposed annual fee for 2020/21

Provincial Executive Council is proposing no increase to the Association member fee, maintaining it at $1,347.

approved fee 
proposed fee   

Total Fee 

$1,347.00  $1,347.00

Funding for programs for which
the local rebate does not apply

$174.00 $177.00

Net fee to distribute

$1,173.00 $1,170.00

Local rebate at 20%

$234.60  $234.00

Balance of net fee (80%)

$938.40 $936.00

Budget by program area

There are two parts to the Association’s budget. The first part includes programs funded by the portion of the fee that is subject to a local rebate. In other words, for each dollar of the membership fee that is applied to this part of the budget, 20 per cent is rebated to local associations to fund their operations. Generally, this is referred to as the rebatable section of the budget. The remaining portion of the fee is used to help fund activities and/or programs not subject to the local rebate. This section is often referred to as the non-rebatable section of the budget.

Part 1: Budget subject to local rebate

The table below compares program area expenditures for the 2020/21 approved budget and the 2021/22 proposed budget. It also provides a general description of the mandate of each program area.

Note: Discipline related committees and staff have been transferred from Teacher Employment Services (former Member Services) to the Government program area.

Program area  Mandate  2020/21 approved budget  2021/22 proposed budget 
Teacher Employment Services

- To improve the economic well-being of teachers through work in collective bargaining, pension and insurance
- To effect increases in the funding for education
- To provide services to individual members on employment issues, professional relations and matters requiring legal assistance
- To provide general service to and consultation with locals, sublocals and staff as requested
- To enhance awareness of the Association’s services

$9,331,100 $8,564,800
Professional Development

- To provide for the improvement of teaching practice through specialist councils, conventions, curriculum work, current issues, local leadership development, assistance to local PD committees, field service and representation to other subgroups
- To prepare a corps of instructors and facilitators
- To improve the preservice education of teachers and liaise with other agencies in these fields and extended field experiences

$5,380,000 $5,511,400
Government - To govern the Association and provide for its obligations beyond Alberta’s borders
- To liaise with other organizations within Alberta
- To maintain communications internally with the membership and externally with the public
- To improve conditions for education through the political involvement of members
- To conduct investigations into possible unprofessional conduct.
$ 9,126,400 $10,126,800
Building - To provide and maintain physical facilities for Association offices in Edmonton and Calgary $3,389,600 $3,268,000
Operations To provide and maintain physical facilities for Association ­offices in Edmonton and Calgary $5,630,500 $5,674,300
Nondepartmental commitments To provide for items that are not directly a part of any other department and for items affecting all or most other departments but which cannot be reasonably provided for within the department $2,021,300 $2,073,800
Food Services To provide a catering service for participants at various meetings and other functions held at Barnett House
- To operate a cafeteria service for staff, tenants and the public
$850,700 $801,600
Information and Technology Services - To maintain and safeguard the Association’s information technology systems and equipment and to develop and maintain electronic capabilities and processes required by other program areas $2,264,400



Part 2: Budget not subject to local rebate

Member fees required to fund the second part of the budget are not subject to the local rebate, and 100 per cent of these fees are available to fund provincial Association programs. The table below compares expenditures and allocations for the 2020/21 approved budget and the 2021/22 proposed budget and provides a brief description of the nature of the expenditures.

and allocation
Description 2018/19 approved budget 2019/20 proposed budget 
Canadian Teachers’ Federation

Provides support for the Canadian Teachers’ Federation based on a per capita fee.

$1,044,500  $1,050,000 
Capital fund Provides an annual allocation to the fund, which is used to purchase any capital assets and to fund capital projects. $850,000 $1,117,500
Special emergency fund Provides an annual allocation to the fund, which is used to fund emergent actions as approved by Provincial Executive Council. $333,000 $333,000
Technology services project development Provides annual funding for projects related to membership application services; online services; unified communications; strategic technology management; and reporting, workflow and form services. $700,000 $700,000
Specialist council membership grants Provides the annual operating grants to the Association’s 21 specialist councils. $870,000 $870,000
Accountability action plan Provides funding to support international partnerships focused on advancing system reform, as well as collaboration with subgroups and like-minded teachers’ organizations that advance the profession’s views. $105,000 $105,000
Mortgage Provides for principal and interest payments on the mortgages in place for construction and renovations that were completed. $2,200,000 $2,275,000
Public relations campaign Provides funding for a multidimensional public relations campaign to highlight the work of the Association and teachers to increase public awareness about the importance of public education and the need for appropriate funding for education. $1,000,000  $1,000,000

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