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Association to host political forum

March 10, 2015 ATA News Staff

The Alberta Teachers’ Association will host an all-party forum on education on Saturday, March 14.

The event is being put on as one part of the Association’s 2015 election readiness plan, which was approved by Provincial Executive Council in early March in anticipation of a spring general election.

The forum will be livestreamed on the Association’s website as it takes place at Edmonton’s Fairmont Hotel Macdonald, where the annual Political Engagement Seminar will be taking place. The archived footage will also be made available for teachers to view at their convenience.

As of Friday, March 6, confirmed participants include the NDP’s ­education critic (and former teacher) Deron ­Bilous and interim Alberta Liberal leader ­David Swann. The PC and ­Wildrose parties have each expressed an intention to send a representative, but no names have yet been confirmed.

Deron Bilous, NDP education critic

David Swann, Interim Alberta Liberal leader

The forum is being offered to engage ATA members in provincial politics.

“We’re a non-partisan organization but we definitely encourage our members to become informed and engaged politically. I view this as fundamentally important,” said Association president Mark Ramsankar.

The Association held two similar events during the provincial election of 2012, which were well received by teachers, Ramsankar said.

The Association’s election readiness plan will also include an online and print advertising campaign highlighting issues in education through a website to be hosted at Print materials will be distributed through locals to teachers, who are asked to share them with their friends, family and neighbours. The Association will also be supporting the parallel election program for students, called Student Vote. ❚

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