Latest on the Ontario Elementary Teachers’ Strike – Jan 6, 2012

As our students prepare to head back to school tomorrow after the two week winter holiday, here’s what parents and students can expect from teachers in regards to the strike.

NO EXTRA-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES:

CTV news reports that a union representing Ontario elementary school teachers is advising its members to continue withdrawing from extracurricular activities in light of the province’s controversial decision to impose contracts on tens of thousands of teachers without one.

In a newsletter sent to members and obtained by CP24, the Elementary Teacher’s Federation of Ontario urges teachers to send a message to the provincial government by pushing the “pause button” on voluntary activities.

The memo, which is dated Jan. 4, comes two days after Education Minister Laurel Broten forced two-year contracts that freeze pay and eliminate the banking of sick days on 126,000 public school teachers and support workers.

“Given the actions of the government, members will continue to focus only on the direct instruction of students and ensure student safety. It has always been the position of the federation that participation in extracurricular and other non-instructional activities is voluntary,” the newsletter states. “There are times when it is both appropriate and necessary to withdraw from voluntary activities. We believe that these are such times.”

There have been widespread reports of teachers refusing to participate in extracurricular activities since the government passed legislation earlier this fall that allowed them to impose contracts upon teachers and support workers without one as of Jan. 1.

On Friday Premier Dalton McGuinty asked ETFO President Sam Hammond and Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation President Ken Coran to fully restore extracurricular activities in public schools, however it would appear his plea fell on deaf ears.

NOT BUSINESS AS USUAL:

“Given what has occurred, it cannot be business as usual in public elementary schools,” the newsletter states. “A lack of a response will mean that members are prepared to accept both the loss of their democratic right to free collective bargaining and a much greater penalty than that imposed, or threatened, on any other public sector worker.”

Read more: http://www.cp24.com/news/teachers-urged-to-withdraw-from-extracurriculars-1.1102112#ixzz2HDgwfJC7

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2 thoughts on “Latest on the Ontario Elementary Teachers’ Strike – Jan 6, 2012

  1. Teachers should be an essential service. Punishing children for a fight they have with the government is the wrong way to do business.

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  2. This whole situation is driving me nuts. I trained as an English teacher, and I simply don’t agree with making the students suffer. They are innocent parties to all of this. Sadly, it is always the vulnerable who suffer. Where is the student’s union rep???

    I am still waiting on the music teacher to call me back re: the cheque I wrote for a flue rental in November, 2012. My daughter has asked for the cheque back several times now, and several times he has said he will call me. So far, there has been no call, no flute, no band practise. Meanwhile, my ( still uncashed) cheque for $180 is floating around in PDSB limbo.

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