May 28, 2014 11:15 am

Fifteen school districts behind picket lines for Day 3 of rotating strikes

Fifteen more school districts are behind picket lines today as Day 3 of the rotating strikes kicks in.

The two sides sat down yesterday and for the first time since the dispute began, neither side leaked any of the discussions to the public.

The talks, which will continue today, are being described as “respectful” by the BC Teachers’ Federation.

The teachers’ union is expected to announce later this afternoon whether the rotating strikes will continue next week.

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Yesterday, Premier Christy Clark waded in to the dispute.  She hopes a resolution will come soon.

“It is not ok to put kids in the middle of this,” said Clark. “The only way to get kids out of the middle of this is for the parties to sit down at the table like adults, bargain in good faith, and bargain hard.”

Education Minister Peter Fassbender would not comment on whether they are closer to a deal today than they were yesterday, “Every day that we are still at the bargaining table, we move,” said Fassbenber. “But, our goal is to break this cycle, and move to a place where we have long-term stability so we can start focusing on education.”

BCTF president Jim Iker says the two sides are talking, which is a good sign, but there’s been no real progress at the bargaining table.

The government’s negotiators and the teachers’ union are expected to meet with the Labour Relations Board on Thursday over lockout provisions that include a 10 per cent pay cut for teachers.

Schools districts on strike on Wednesday, May 28:

#08 – Kootenay Lake
#34 – Abbotsford
#37 – Delta
#43 – Coquitlam
#47 – Powell River
#50 – Haida Gwaii
#51 – Boundary
#53 – Okanagan Similkameen
#60 – Peace River North
#61 – Greater Victoria
#69 – Qualicum
#73 – Kamloops Thompson
#84 – Vancouver Island West
#91 – Nechako Lakes
#92 – Nisga’a

Today, stories submitted by parents concerned about the ongoing strike via Parents4BC will be also handed in to the provincial government in the Legislature.

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