After months without clubs and teams, the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation has suspended its ban on extracurricular activities. This does not indicate the end of the teachers’ strife, but rather an indefinite removal of students from the middle of the situation.
However, no instruction has yet been issued by the TDSB, and individual teachers are still free to make their own decisions.
Cited first among the reasons for the progress is the cooperation of Ontario’s new Premier: Kathleen Wynne.
The following memo was sent to OSSTF members and obtained by The Reckoner this afternoon.
It outlines to teachers the details of the announcement as stated by Ken Coran: President of the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation.
The tone of the letter suggests that Ontario has not seen the end of the teachers’ protest against new contracts enforced by the Ontario government. Coran is expected to comment further on the matter on Monday.
Since the selection of Kathleen Wynne as the new Premier, many meetings, both formal and informal, have been held to develop a process to properly address OSSTF/FEESO concerns.
During the past two weeks, representatives from OSSTF/FEESO have engaged in high level discussions. These representatives include the Teacher/Occasional Teacher and Support Staff Ad Hoc Advisory Work Groups, provincial negotiators and the Provincial Executive.
These discussions have focused on OSSTF/FEESO identified issues and have been structured to achieve appropriate solutions.
Substantial progress was made at the most recent meeting with government representatives on Thursday, February 21.
As a result of this progress, the provincial negotiators unanimously recommended the following motion to the Provincial Executive:
“That the Provincial Executive recommend to members that we suspend our political actions related to extra-curricular and voluntary activities.”
After a thorough debate, the Provincial Executive also unanimously supported the recommendation.
The Provincial Executive and provincial negotiators presented all the information related to the discussions and the associated motion to both Ad Hoc Advisory Work Groups. These Work Groups include a total of 28 local presidents and local chief negotiators who represent the geographical and bargaining unit diversity of our 60,000 members. The Ad Hoc Advisory Work Groups also strongly endorsed the motion.
On Friday, a full report was presented to all local bargaining unit presidents and other members who comprise Provincial Council. Provincial Council is OSSTF/FEESO’s decision-making body between Annual Meetings. The following motion was presented:
“BE IT RESOLVED THAT Provincial Council endorse the following motion passed by the Provincial Executive:
That the Provincial Executive recommend to members that we suspend our current political action related to extra-curricular and voluntary activities.”
This motion was strongly endorsed by Provincial Council.
The Provincial Executive recognizes that each member will make individual and personal decisions regarding extra-curricular and voluntary activities.