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Elections 101

March 10, 2015

Some Alberta Teachers’ Association members have already cast their votes in the 2015 PEC election. But not all members have had time to get up to speed on this important provincewide event. If you can spare just a few minutes, here are the answers to some frequently asked questions about the 2015 PEC election.

What is PEC?

Provincial Executive Council (PEC) leads and transacts the business of the Alberta Teachers’ Association on behalf of its 40,000-plus members. Its membership includes the Association’s executive secretary, its past president and 18 other positions that are open to election every two years. Terms for current PEC members expire June 30, 2015.

Here is a breakdown of the different positions on Provincial Executive Council (PEC):

  • President — The president is the official spokesperson and chief representative of the Association. He or she is also chair of PEC and other designated committees.
  • Vice-president — Vice-presidents (VPs), along with the past president, also chair or act on major administrative committees and share in representing the Association. In the absence of the president, VPs act in that capacity.
  • District representatives — District representatives (DRs) ascertain the views of Association members and act as resources to ATA locals within the geographical districts they are elected to represent.

Am I eligible to vote?

To vote, you must be an active or associate member of the ATA in good standing at any time within 30 days prior to the official election date of March 23.

Active members are those employed by a public, separate or francophone school jurisdiction in Alberta.

Associate members are those who have elected to join the ATA. Examples of members in this category include but are not limited to superintendents, teachers employed by charter schools, teachers employed as faculty members at post-secondary institutions, teachers employed by the Government of Alberta and teachers pursuing graduate studies on a full-time basis.

How do I vote?

For the first time in ATA history, a PEC election will be conducted 100 per cent online. Instructions related to the confidential registration and voting processes were mailed to the attention of your ATA school representative on Feb. 27 for distribution to all teachers. The instructions also are posted on the ATA website.

What do I need to vote?

To vote you need to have an online ATA account and a computer or laptop with Internet access. Devices with touchscreens also may be used. However, please keep in mind the registration and voting systems are optimized for use on personal computers or laptops.

When can I vote?

Online registration and voting opened Feb. 27 and closes March 19 at 5 p.m. For those choosing the “Vote Later” option during registration, voting closes March 22 at 5 p.m.

Is my vote confidential?

Yes. Though the registration and voting processes are seamlessly integrated, their platforms are housed on two separate websites and two separate servers. An out-of-province third-party vendor contracted by the ATA is managing and monitoring the website and servers used during the voting process. Neither the ATA nor the third-party vendor can link a vote to a registration, ensuring the security and confidentiality of all votes cast.

Who are the candidates?

This year there will be an election for vice-president in which ATA members across the province can vote. For ATA members in geographic districts of Calgary City, Edmonton McMurray and South East there also will be elections for district representatives.

Candidate profiles and videos of their campaign speeches — and much more information about the election — can be found on the ATA website. Visit and click on any of the 2015 PEC election graphics or links to find out more. ❚

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