Teacher-Volunteers: Unpaid Labour a Symptom of Precarious Work

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Teacher-Volunteers: Unpaid Labour a Symptom of Precarious Work

Michael Mindzak

As we continue to contend with the various challenges surrounding COVID-19, one interesting result has been the pronounced decline in volunteerism. With increasingly stringent health measures such as social distancing and contact tracing, volunteerism at this time has decreased. This includes schools as well, where distance education and limited interactions have meant that volunteers can or else should keep away. Nevertheless, it might be interesting to consider how such volunteerism trends might impact education here in Ontario.

Over the past decade, schools in Ontario have witnessed a significant shift in volunteerism. Schools in places such as Ontario have long embraced... volunteers, typically consisting of parents and members of the community who seek to be further involved in the school. Anyone who has worked within a school setting readily sees the various ways volunteers are involved in K-12 settings. Individuals, typically parents, often find the time to take part in their own children’s schools by engaging in voluntary activities. The idea here is that that volunteerism might be understood, more or less, as an act of altruism.

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