TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Nov. 28, 2012) - The Ontario Secondary School Teachers' Federation (OSSTF/FEESO) has suspended all negotiations with school boards until further notice. This action comes after the Ministry of Education refused to give approval to a number of locally bargained tentative agreements, deeming them not "substantively identical," and on the heels of the rejection of tentative agreements by members in York and Niagara at ratification votes on Tuesday.
All Bargaining Unit leaders have been called to a special meeting on Monday, December 3 at which time next actions specific to collective bargaining and the Bill 115 Fight Back Campaign will be outlined.
The ratification vote for the District 21, Hamilton-Wentworth Teacher Bargaining Unit will proceed on Friday, November 30. All other scheduled ratification votes are delayed until after Monday's meeting with local leaders.
Ken Coran, President of OSSTF/FEESO stated that "when OECTA signed their Memorandum with the government in July, they established a pattern of accepting significant concessions. In September, the Liberals and Conservatives passed Bill 115, which threatens to impose this MoU or something substantively identical upon us. In spite of these constraints, OSSTF/FEESO attempted to bargain deals that protect members."
"When Premier McGuinty prorogued the Legislature, he made it impossible to have any further political dialogue on this issue. With Bill 115, this government has failed the education workers and citizens of this province and has only succeeded in creating chaos, discontent and an environment of disrespect toward teachers and educational support staff workers in Ontario," concluded Coran.
No further statements will be made by Provincial Office or local OSSTF/FEESO leaders until after the meeting on Monday.
OSSTF/FEESO, founded in 1919, has 60,000 members across Ontario. They include public high school teachers, occasional teachers, educational assistants, continuing education teachers and instructors, early childhood educators, psychologists, secretaries, speech-language pathologists, social workers, plant support personnel, university support staff, and many others in education.