Expect to see more teachers outside picketing and increased political action from ETFO members starting on Monday.
OXFORD COUNTY - The Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario has given notice it will escalate its political action starting this Monday March 9th.
ETFO President Sam Hammond says they made the decision because the Ford government has initiated no dates for Central talks.
“Despite Minister Lecce’s pronouncements to the media this week, the government has not initiated any contract talks with ETFO. We will do what it takes to stop the Minister’s rhetoric and get his negotiating team to come to the table with proposals that will result in a fair deal for students, student learning and educators.”
ETFO has advised its members to continue pickets outside of their schools and invite parents to join them outside of school hours, make personal phone calls to Conservative MPPs to discuss the impact of the Ford cuts and send letters to the Executive Council of the Ontario Public School Boards’ Association (OPSBA) to highlight key bargaining issues
Hammond says the ETFO will be taking other actions as well to communicate directly with the public.
“It’s key that the public understand what is really at stake for public education in these contract talks. We’re asking our members to arrange meetings with school trustees, address school councils and leaflet homes in their communities after hours to inform people of the issues.”
An additional component of ETFO’s Phase 7 strike action beginning March 23 will be announced this Monday.
The announcement comes as the Cathothic teachers representing AEFO and OECTA staged a one day strike today.
Today, Stephen Lecce, Minister of Education, issued the following statement in response to continued strike action by OSSTF, OECTA, and AEFO:
"I have offered all teachers' union federations a fair and reasonable plan, which should pave the way to reaching a good deal that keeps students in class.
The government has consistently made reasonable moves - effectively freezing class room sizes, a parental opt out for online learning, a commitment to full-day kindergarten, and one hundred per cent investment in special education.
The time for a deal is now, I urge the unions to stop this disruptive escalation and return to the table to get a deal that is fair for parents, students, and educators."
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