By Graeme MacKay, Editorial Cartoonist, The Hamilton Spectator – Friday August 21, 2015
Elementary teachers will do extracurriculars as work-to-rule escalates
Ontario’s elementary public school teachers plan to ramp up their work-to-rule campaign when classes begin in less than three weeks – but they will still take part in extracurricular activities.
Teachers won’t take part in any field trips, fundraising campaigns or professional development activities, Sam Hammond, president of the Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario, announced on Thursday morning.
However, the union won’t be asking teachers to stop voluntary extracurricular activities unless things get worse in contract talks, Hammond said.
Teachers won’t participate in professional development activities or respond to electronic messages outside of instructional hours, unless student safety is at issue, Hammond said.
The 78,000 teachers in the ETFO also are urged not to take on any duties normally performed by principals, Hammond said.
Bargaining is set to resume Sept. 1.
“We will be prepared for anything and everything on Sept. 1,” Hammond said.
Hammond repeated a warning he issued earlier in the week that the Ontario government and school boards are “in for the fight of their lives” if they push proposals that might “undermine” public education or increase class sizes.
He dismissed suggestions that he lacks support of the union’s membership.
“Anyone who says I control you needs to be here,” he said.
He made his comments dressed in a red T-shirt that read, “Bargaining for the future, respecting our past.”
Meanwhile, there’s 60 days left until the federal election with a lot of seats up for grabs for Premier Wynne’s preferred next Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau.
He made no mention of wages or benefits in his address. (Source: Hamilton Spectator)