September 2009 President’s Bulletin

Over the past twelve months the BCTELA executive has reflected on BCTELA and its role. We identified our current “tent poles”: our journal (English Practice), our annual conference and our student writing journal (Voices Visible). We also realized that we needed to re-think our website to better reflect 21st century Literacies.

Download the 2009 President’s Bulletin in PDF format
to review with us the product of our reflective energies and to acquaint yourself with what we have in store for the coming year.

New Wordscapes Youth Art Journal

After publishing the annual Wordscapes: British Columbia Youth Writing Anthology for the past six years, Ripple Effect Arts and Literature Society (REAL) will be relaunching the publication as the new Wordscapes Youth Arts Journal in March 2008. In addition to publishing nearly 50 talented high school writers and visual artists each year, the journal will also have a Contemporary Writing section with writing samples by established authors from Canada’s literary community. REAL is excited to have lined up a number of excellent writers to appear in the first three issues in 2008, including: Douglas Coupland, Christian Bök, Wade Compton, Rachel Zolf, Janina Hornosty and Billeh Nickerson. (more…)

ERAC Revisited

At our last executive meeting, one of our members expressed a concern regarding a troubling district-wide email she received from her board office: a ‘friendly’ reminder to submit any novel titles she may be considering for her classes next year to BC ERAC so that they could be approved for use. A colleague’s request for clarification was answered with a general confirmation that any novels used in the classroom next year must be on the ERAC list ( and scroll on NOVEL). Until now she has exercised her professional autonomy and reviewed novels herself during the summer if she felt she wanted to use something new in the coming year. (more…)

Canadian Bar Association events in support of Law Week 2008

Each April, the Canadian Bar Association holds events to celebrate Law Week. This year, the CBA events include an essay contest and a public speaking competition.

The CBA events celebrate the signing of the Canadian Chart of Rights and Freedoms. This year’s theme for Law Week is “The Law: Past, Present and Future.” (more…)

English 12 First Peoples Update

BCTELA wants to keep English language arts teachers “in the loop” during the development of this exciting new course. Keep posted for lists of recommended resources and opportunities to get involved with piloting units of study by checking out the BCTELA web site ( and the First Nations Education Steering Committee web site ( (more…)

English Language Arts 8-12 Curriculum Review Update

As many of you are aware, the Ministry has been involved for some time now in a wholesale revision to the English language arts curriculum for grades 8-12.

The Ministry ignored long-established protocols whereby the BCTF was involved in the selection of curriculum writing team members, and only after a draft curriculum was available was BCTF input requested. (more…)

Barry Sullivan Public Speaking Contest

Each April, the Canadian Bar Association holds events to celebrate Law Week. In past years, these have included short story, essay, photo, video and public speaking competitions.

The CBA events celebrate the signing of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. This year’s theme for Law Week is “Access to Justice.” (more…)

Catalogue Offers Recommended Novel Titles for Classroom Use

The Ministry of Education has reminded school districts that novels used in classrooms must be evaluated and selected through policies and procedures established by the district and approved by the local school board. The Ministry of Education used to carry out these evaluation but stopped running them in 1998. (more…)

Presidents Message

This President’s Bulletin is a bit of a smorgasbord—with an assortment of opportunities for you and your students. For teachers, there is info on the Surrey English Teachers’ Inspiration Day: “You are a reader too, you are a writer too” on Friday, February 16, 2007. This conference is open to out-of-district teachers and will be sure to beat back the winter blahs. (more…)


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