UPDATE: Teacher Job Action Expected
The province's public secondary teachers are preparing for job action on November 7th.
A directive posted on the Ontario Secondary School Teachers' Federation (OSSTF) website instructs teachers to not attend any staff or professional development meetings, complete ministry reports or administer or take part in any standardized tests. It tells teachers not to email or meet with parents outside of school hours.
Up until now, the union had encouraged teachers to bow out of extra currivular activities, but it was up to the individual teachers on if they wanted to volunteer.
Local bargaining units also have a choice to tell their teachers to stop submitting student attendance or take part in cirriculum writing.
The only things the union instructs teachers to keep doing is teaching class, doing prep work and marking. It says they can provide extra help to students if they want to.
This action is because the union isn't happy the province imposed a contract on them last month.
The OSSTF is just one of the unions along with the Elementary Teacher's Federation of Ontario (ETFO) and Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) Ontario which are involved in a constitutional court challenge of Bill 115.
The "union bulletin" can be found on the OSSTF's website here.
In response to this, Education Minister Laurel Broten sent out this written statement:
“It is very concerning to me to see that OSSTF is prepared to take these strike actions that could put at risk the gains we’ve made in education. We need all of our partners in education to work with us to find solutions that put the success of our students – including EQAO and literacy tests – first. The Putting Students First Act allows for local bargaining to continue until December 31, 2012 and I encourage all local unions, including OSSTF, to keep negotiating at the local level to reach agreements instead of resorting to strike action.
The Putting Students First Act gives the government – through Cabinet – tools to intervene in the case of strike action. Those tools include imposing an agreement where it appears that an agreement cannot be reached at the local level that is consistent with the provisions in the Act. In addition, the government could intervene to end strike actions outside of imposing an agreement. At this point, we are monitoring closely to see how local unions operationalize job actions and will assess options.”