ETFO To Escalate Job Action

By | September 20, 2015

Ontario’s public elementary teachers are expected to go on rotating one-day strikes in October, if more progress is not made at the negotiating table, the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario (ETFO) said last Friday.

As of tomorrow, contract and occasional teachers have been instructed to stop responding to administrators’ emails, refuse to submit plans or prepare report card comments and not participate in parent-teacher meetings unless there is a concern about a child’s progress.

Liz Sandals issued a statement in which she had confidence that a deal can be reached based on the offer her government has already presented to the unions. Unfortunately, that’s not how ETFO sees it.

On “Wynne Wednesdays” teachers will now be instructed to:

– Refrain from any activities that take them away from their classrooms and focus on teaching and student supervision

– Demonstrate union solidarity by wearing a solidarity colour, their ETFO buttons, ETFO T-shirts, ETFO caps, etc.

– Send messages to the Minister of Education or OPSBA via email and social media about the importance of fair and reasonable collective bargaining

– All ETFO members will engage in planned lobbying activities including information pickets, local rallies, letter writing campaigns, pamphlet drops and other solidarity activities.

Phase 3, which starts Monday, involves the following:

  • Not fill in for an absent teacher or take on additional students if a class is collapsed because an occasional teacher has not been retained
  • Not take on additional duties during regularly scheduled preparation time (including teaching in another class)
  • Not participate in teacher performance appraisal meetings, unless the member is on an improvement plan or long-term occasional assignment
  • Not respond to email, electronic or phone communication from administrators unless it involves the safety of others, absences, day plans or occasional teacher assignments
  • Not update classroom websites, blogs or newsletters
  • Not submit any long-range or short-range plans, or literacy and numeracy block plans
  • Not update Individual Education Plans (IEPs) after the 30th day of school deadline
  • Not participate in any in-school meetings or professional learning activities on PA days, opting instead to use the time for their own professional development within the classroom
  • Not prepare report card comments or complete or package progress reports, though they will provide administrators with a hard copy list of learning skills and work habits ratings
  • Not conduct parent interview related to the progress report cards, unless there are concerns identified by the teacher about a child’s progress
  • Not act as division chairs or team leads

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