Here’s When Parents Will Find Out If School Workers Accepted Doug Ford’s Offer


CUPE school staff continue to vote this weekend on an interim four-year deal with the province – and the union is now announcing the result will be released Monday morning.

In a revised timeline, CUPE’s Ontario School Board Council of Unions said voting – which began Nov. 24 – will end on Sunday and President Laura Walton will make an announcement Monday morning at Queen’s Park.

The government, school boards and union crafted the tentative contract after the province backtracked and repealed controversial Bill 28, a preemptively attempted strike ban for 55,000 workers and to impose a contract on them by using the “notwithstanding” clause of the Charter.

“My colleagues and I stood up to the Ford government to get a forced contract repeal under anti-worker Bill 28,” Walton said in a statement. « This tentative agreement is the first in 10 years to be freely negotiated rather than imposed on us by legislative interference. »

Walton, an education assistant, said that “over the past week and a half, frontline education workers have been deciding whether what is in this tentative agreement is acceptable. That’s it — workers having the freedom to bargain and withdraw our work if necessary — that’s democracy in action.

If approved, votes will then be held for school board associations to ratify it.

Education Minister Stephen Lecce said, “Since negotiations began, the Ontario government has worked to ensure students stay in the classroom and learn. I am grateful to our education workers for making a difference in our schools and grateful that students learn in the classroom, benefit from clubs, sports and extracurricular activities.

He said in a statement that « students need stability, and I sincerely hope that everyone will come together to ensure that children learn in the classroom without interruption until June. »

CUPE represents custodians, teacher assistants, early childhood educators, library technicians and others in a number of school boards across the province.

Cathy Abraham, president of the Ontario Public School Boards Association, said CUPE workers need to know that boards “appreciate and understand the work they do for us – they are essential to the care of our schools. and our children. We need our CUPE members, ultimately.

The tentative agreement with CUPE was reached on November 20, a day before the workers went on strike.

It offers a $1 per hour raise each year, with the average worker earning 15.2% over four years – and the lowest-paid workers receiving almost 17% over that period.

Last month, CUPE school staff walked off work for two days in a successful attempt to pressure the government to reverse Bill 28.


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