Teacher shortage, upcoming negotiations among topics at annual B.C. Teachers Federation meeting

The B.C. Teachers Federation is looking to the year ahead with an annual general meeting that began last night in Vancouver.

B.C. Premier John Horgan will be speaking to delegates Tuesday morning

BCTF President Glen Hansman gives his opening address at the federation's annual general meeting Saturday night. (Matthew Black/CBC)

The B.C. Teachers Federation is looking to the year ahead with an annual general meeting that began Saturday night in Vancouver.

The union says it will be the largest gathering since an agreement was reached with the province in 2016 to restore classroom size and composition standards and collective bargaining rights.

"We have a lot to talk about in the next four days — some big decisions to make as we go forward into bargaining and in relation to the new government," said BCTF president Glen Hansman in his opening address. 

Leader Glen Hansman said that while more than 3,000 positions have been filled since that agreement, that's still not enough to fill the need — especially for students with special needs and French-language positions.

Another topic the federation is looking at this year is education about Indigenous history and culture.

Teachers are advocating for mandatory courses in those subjects. They're also discussing graduation rates and access to education for Indigenous students.

Premier John Horgan will be speaking to delegates Tuesday morning before the meeting is adjourned.