Elementary teachers ramp up job action: no field trips, extra-curriculars

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TORONTO — Elementary teachers in Ontario are stepping up their job action today with a new phase of their work-to-rule campaign.

Teachers won’t be supervising extra-curricular activities outside regular school hours, participating in field trips, or participating in assemblies, except to supervise students.

They are also threatening to start rotating strikes next Monday “if the government refuses to address critical issues” by Friday.

This round of contract talks has been difficult between the government and all major teachers’ unions, with most at varying stages of job action.

In English Catholic schools, teachers will start their own work-to-rule campaign, including not participating in standardized testing, preparing report card comments or participating in Ministry of Education initiatives.

And on Wednesday, high school teachers will stage the latest in a series of rotating strikes, this one affecting boards in Ottawa, Hamilton, Durham Region and other areas across the province.

Education Minister Stephen Lecce says teachers in the French system have also announced a work-to-rule campaign, but the union would only say that it will talk about the next steps in the bargaining process at a press conference on Tuesday.

Catholic and high school teachers were angered when the Tories announced in March that average secondary school class sizes would jump from 22 to 28 and four e-learning courses would be mandatory for graduation.

The province has since scaled back those increases, to an average class size of 25 and two e-learning courses, but the unions say that’s not good enough.

All of the major teachers’ unions are also going to court to challenge legislation that caps wage increases for public sector workers.

For elementary teachers, the union has said key issues are more supports for students with special needs, addressing violence in schools and preserving full-day kindergarten.

Lecce has repeatedly said the key sticking point in negotiations with high school teachers is compensation, with the union demanding a roughly two-per-cent wage increase and the government offering one per cent.

28 COMMENTS

  1. I think the idea is it isn’t part of the written education plan the teachers plan field trips do pizza orders fund raising for grade 8 trips that aren’t mandatory by the way. Or is swimming lessons think how much fun it must be in a change room with 30 kindergartens helping getting them dressed keeping track of there stuff . Moms and Dads you know what I’m talking about. They don’t have to do after school sports . There is so many things they do that I see as a custodian in the school that I had no idea. They are bugging by July to get into there classrooms to get them ready for your kids looking forward to see there faces .I really had no idea till I seen it for myself

  2. Let’s face it, the Canadian government is trying to switch over to American. Schools in America are horrid teachers pay for supplies out of pocket which is bs. Our healthcare same thing basically trying to privatize everything. so I stand with Teacher and healthcare providers🇨🇦

  3. Teachers are doing what they can to stop the changes to education in this province! If parents are upset, and you should be, you are able to do something too — write or call your MP, MPP and Minister of Education to tell them to negotiate a fair deal for betterment of education and all of the children in this province.

  4. This is too far!!! Now the only ones who are suffering are the children! The government doesn’t look forward to field trips the kids do. I agreed with everything, but this so far!

  5. If you don’t like your job or your employer, go find work elsewhere. Don’t take it out on the children! I can imagine what a teacher’s household looks like when they don’t get their way. Their kids probably don’t get fed, or they have to walk alone to their dance recital or hockey game. There is no union at home to change these teachers’ diapers or hand them kleenex. And they call themselves professionals. Ha!

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