What’s in a name?

by Martha Foster RTOERO Chair

It seems most odd to me, preparing this article for you, knowing that when you read it I will no longer be the Chair of RTOERO. I feel very lucky to have this opportunity to spend a few words explaining why we undertook a long, consultative process to change the name of RTOERO.

RTOERO is an amazing organization. From its very beginnings, when a group of teachers hand-wrote and mailed thousands of letters to all the retired teachers in Ontario inviting them to join this new organization that was starting up, their dedication was incredible. The dedication of RTOERO members is still incredible. Hundreds of members across this country volunteer their time to serve you in your districts and nationally on committees and the Board of Directors.

What has changed is who we serve. We have evolved from our roots as retired teachers who taught in Ontario to individuals retired and approaching retirement from the broader educational system across Canada. This now includes everyone who works in and retires from early childhood education, public and private schools, school boards, colleges and universities. If you had anything to do with education, we are the organization for you.

So, why change our name? Because we are changing. Not all of our members are retired or teachers or from Ontario. We need a name that represents who we are now.

But wait, there’s more. Many people approaching retirement confuse us with one of our competitors. We need a name that accurately and positively encompasses all of our current members and welcomes future members from across the Canadian education community.

We will continue to be the organization we all know and care about. But now we have a new name that better exemplifies us all — proud of our legacy but embracing the present and preparing to move into the future.

Now please see Jim Grieve’s accompanying article on the exciting outcome of our name search!