Case Report – Alberta arbitrator doesn’t like Patriot Act argument

On September 7th, an arbitration board chaired by Arbitrator Jones of Alberta partly upheld a grievance that challenged the implementation of psychometric testing for principals and others. The grievance award is largely fact-specific, but is notable for its treatment of an association argument that suggested the testing program was unreasonable because it required a transfer of personal information to the United States.

Arbitrator Jones said:

A great deal of the ATA’s objections to the LPA relate to the fact that it was created by High Performing Systems Inc, which is an American organization, is based in United States, has links to the U.S. military, and uses U.S. data (at least in part). Xenophobia does not establish the unreasonableness of the use of the LPA as part of the selection process.

Arbitrator Jones did, however, find that the rollout of the program was “maladroit,” suggesting that there were questions about the privacy impact of the program that the employer ought to have been prepared to answer.

Calgary Board of Education v. Alberta Teachers’ Assn. (Leadership Potential Assessment Grievance), [2010] A.G.A.A. NO. 52 (Jones) (QL).

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