Ontario and Teachers Agree to a Tentative Deal

A recent update has confirmed that the Ontario government has successfully sealed the deal of an agreement with the union representing high-school teachers at the province’s public school boards. The Education Minister, Liz Sandals, addressed a special letter to all school boards on Sunday, announcing that both sides have made progress in ably identifying their reservations on a number of issues, including sick leave, unpaid days, maternity leave and local bargaining.

The details of the agreement are deemed to be shared with the members of The Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation soon over the course of next few days. The letter authored by Ms. Sandals states that “we have indicated … that anything we agree to with our partners must reflect our current fiscal situation and fit within the ministry’s funding envelope.” Additionally, the high-school union leaders have already hinted that they are preparing to withdraw extracurriculars due to a development in negotiations with Premier Kathleen Wynne’s government. The negotiations are still underway with the elementary teachers union. The union leaders agreed last week to suspend their ongoing political protest, asking members to restore voluntary activities.

The president of the Ontario Public School Boards’ Association, Michael Barrett, has mentioned that thinks the labour unrest and uncertainty for parents and students can be essentially avoided in this school year, in case both sides hold an appropriate and serious dialogue from the outset. Mr. Barrett alleged that “I look forward to a permanent process by which we can negotiate with trust and transparency.”

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