Experience, knowledge, and truth for the win

Creative desktop top view. Typewriter, papers, diary, coffee mug, crumpled paper.

Making a better tomorrow together

We are Zoomed out , we are exhausted by the strain of fighting to keep our families, friends, and communities safe. The struggles are real and the impact will be long term. But through all of this I am given hope by the stories and the individual moments of grace and kindness that abound.

As labour activists, grassroots members, and leaders we can see the power of kindness and the power of valuing the voices and experiences of those around us. I take this to heart in the work I do as editor of Education Forum. I’m proud to see the diversity of voices and experiences we have been able to showcase in recent issues and this Spring 2022 issue is no different. OSSTF/FEESO President, Karen Littlewood and Executive Officer, Hayssam Hulays highlight their experiences at COP26 in Glasgow Scotland. Hearing about the influence labour continues to have in pushing for real action on the climate crisis is a story of hope and of frustration. Addressing global climate change means working together and reconfiguring our actions to make meaningful impact, no matter how small.

Dan Stevens writes about the power of looking back at knowledge gained from the past and shaping it to help improve things in the future in “Traditional knowledge and education.” He reminds us that education is an individual journey, and that similarly “As a Federation, we must take the time to examine who we are, where we come from and where we want to be.” In “Disinformation and hate during the COVID-19 era” Elizabeth Simons of the Canadian Anti-Hate Network highlights how knowledge can be a powerful tool for dismantling hate and oppression.

The idea of knowledge and change is echoed in OSSTF/FEESO’s Education Platform, showcased in the article “OSSTF/FEESO’s Education Platform: Strengthen Public Education—Rebuild Ontario” the Federation’s Election Organizers review our advocacy and lobbying document which centres the province’s growth in increased supports for publicly-funded education. With the upcoming June 2, 2022 provincial election, this platform shapes our messaging for electing an education-friendly, worker-friendly government.

The pending election weighs heavily on the minds of all in education, and of those who hope for a better future that supports communities and addresses systemic inequities. Vaino Poysa’s article provides important updates on the court challenge to Bill 307, which amended sections of the Election Finances Act, placing significant limits and restrictions to the amount and type of political advertising that third party political advertisers, including unions, are able to make.

These articles, along with others in this issue, provide me with one common message—that the past offers us lessons to change the future and that the future is one that must value lived experience, knowledge, and truth in order to stand up to the challenges we face. Civil society, labour, and equity work are the basis of bringing us a better tomorrow. I hope that you find the contents of this issue as inspiring as I do and I hope the magazine comes to you in wellness and hope.

In solidarity,


Tracey Germa, Editor

About Tracey Germa
Tracey Germa is the 1st Vice-President of the Teacher Bargaining Unit in District 14, Kawartha Pine Ridge and is a member of the provincial Communications and Political Action Committee.

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