June 30, 2014 7:25 pm

Monday could be a pivotal day in ongoing teachers’ dispute

VANCOUVER – Monday may prove to be a pivotal day in the ongoing teachers’ dispute.

The deadline for a $1,200 signing bonus for teachers expires today.

The provincial government promised the bonus if a new collective bargaining agreement was reached before the end of the school year, but the clock is ticking.

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Since the deal has still not been reached, teachers are once again behind the picket lines Monday morning.

The B.C. Government has scored a mild victory though late last week.

The Labour Relations Board deemed summer school classes an essential service.

The decision relates specifically to remedial classes for those students looking to make up for a course they may have failed.

Currently the B.C. Teachers’ Federation is calling for $45 million a year, including retroactive pay and for class size and composition changes along with increased medical benefits. The union is also asking for an eight per cent wage increase over five years and a $5,000 signing bonus.

The province is offering seven per cent over six years plus the smaller signing bonus of $1,200, which expires Monday.

The BCTF said if the government doesn’t come to the table with new funding by Monday then teachers will picket outside summer schools. The two sides met for negotiations on Thursday and Friday but imposed a media blackout on information.

- With files from Paula Baker

© Shaw Media, 2014

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