PROVINCE PREPARES FOR POSSIBLE ELEMENTARY TEACHERS' STRIKE

Nov 30, 2012

By Jane Brown

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Public elementary school teachers in some Ontario boards could begin one day walkouts as early as the second week of December.   They’re protesting the provincial government’s controversial Bill 115 which freezes wages and cuts benefits.  David Clegg is the president of York Region’s elementary teachers.  He says he and his members have been told by the executive of the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario that they will walk out for “a day” the week of December 10th and teachers in some other boards will go out at the same time.

Education Minister Laurel Broten has put union leaders on notice that the government has the power to intervene and keep students in the classroom. “We do have tools to respond and that is by way of order council of cabinet.  OSSTF (Ontario Secondary School Teachers Federation) has been talking about specific strike action.  We’ve been monitoring.  We could’ve intervened if we saw students’ safety was at risk.  We got feedback from the boards across the province that they were managing well within their contingency plans.”

In Toronto, public elementary school teachers will be in a legal strike position around December 10th.  A published report says teachers were notified by email that there will be a one day strike before December 21st.

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