Today's date: Thursday February 22, 2018
column width padding column width padding
The Wellington Advertiser Masthead Logo

We Cover The County...
39,925 Audited Circulation

WEEKLY POLL   |   Community News   |   EQUINE   |   Schools & Buses

Wellington Weddings 2018
column width padding column width padding

Elementary teachers to launch strike action as early as May 11

by Chris Daponte

WELLINGTON COUNTY - Local elementary school teachers are among 76,000 teachers across the province who could be launching some sort of strike action as early as Monday (May 11).

It remains unclear exactly what form of action the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario (ETFO) will take - and the effect it will have on hundreds of thousands of students across the province.

However, it appears a full strike will be avoided for now, with teachers expected to take part in administrative work-to-rule action that could include a refusal to complete standardized tests, attend professional development sessions and/or prepare report cards.

“I think it’s probably coming on Monday, but I believe the kids will be in school,” Upper Grand District School Board (UGDSB) spokesperson Maggie McFadzen said in an interview on May 5.

Later that day the board issued a press release stating it expects local teachers “will begin an administrative work-to-rule campaign” on May 11, but that schools “will be open as usual” with “no impact on extended day programs, other childcare programs or transportation.”

However, Gundi Barbour, president of the Upper Grand ETFO, would not confirm on Tuesday what next week’s strike action would look like, stating union members had not yet been fully apprised of plans.

“I know parents are concerned about their children ... teachers are also concerned about their students,” Barbour told the Advertiser.

The teachers’ current contract expired in August and after eight months of failed negotiations, the ETFO recently received a “no board” report from the Ministry of Labour, meaning the two sides are at an impasse.

ETFO officials say they are taking strike action due to demands from the government that would “compromise students’ learning conditions” by giving school boards latitude to increase class sizes, dictating how teachers spend preparation time and curtailing teachers’ ability to determine “how to support student learning.”

ETFO officials have also stated the government wants to rescind a regulation allowing occasional teachers to be hired to long-term or permanent positions.

However, minister Liz Sandals has countered that the job action is more the result of the union’s “general desire to have a strike.” She told the media on Monday that conditions set by the ETFO to avoid a strike were “pretty unrealistic.”

Locally, Barbour noted negotiations with  the UGDSB are in the very early stages.

“Our concerns right now are at the provincial table ... not at the local board,” she said.

The ETFO was expected to make strike plans clear to parents by Thursday or Friday.

May 8, 2015


Tell Us What You Think

Login to submit a comment

Comments appearing on this website are the opinion of the comment writer and do not represent the opinion of the Wellington Advertiser. Comments that attack other individuals or are offensive, unsubstantiated or otherwise inappropriate will be removed. You must register or log in in order to post a comment. For more information, read our detailed Comment Policy and Guidelines.




Community Guide Winter 2017

Related Stories

  • MADD regroups with new local chapter after several years' hiatus
  • Books for Kids drive on until Dec. 19
  • OMAF and MRA Report
  • Plowmen’s Banquet
  • Alton chosen to OMSSA board
  • All clear: local municipalities lift fire bans
  • Area beaches 'posted' due to E. coli levels
  • County approves $9.4 million in funding for three area hospitals
  • County to open three waste facilities to handle flood-damaged items
  • Elementary teachers to launch strike action as early as May 11
  • Farmers defrauded in Pigeon King breeding scheme won't see much money
  • Fire chiefs issue county-wide ban on open air burning
  • Food banks hope to offer nourishment, spread cheer this Christmas
  • Guelph/Wellington community raises $150,000 for children’s foundation at Around the World Gala
  • Harriston, Drayton hit with massive flooding
  • It’s official: Canada turns 150
  • column width padding column width padding column width padding

    The Wellington Advertiser





    Digital Publications


    Twitter Logo

    Free Press News Network Logo