Two sides in B.C. teachers dispute make progress on Thursday

WATCH ABOVE: It was an eventful day of news in the B.C. Teachers Dispute. Catherine Urquhart reports.

VANCOUVER – There were several promising signs in the B.C. teachers dispute on Thursday, which ended with government negotiator Peter Cameron and BCTF President Jim Iker meeting with mediator Vince Ready in an undisclosed location.

There was no word Thursday night on where the two sides met, or whether the talks would lead to full bargaining teams resuming mediation or negotiation.

Their discussions happened on the same day Education Minister Peter Fassbender edged away from his long-held position not to legislate striking teachers back
to work, in the face of a union buoyed by a landslide vote and a multimillion-dollar cash infusion.

At the same time, he also said that E80, the controversial government proposal that would supersede any final Supreme Court decision, could be negotiated.

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“We have said clearly, tell us what the problem with E80 is, and we’ll negotiate that,” said Fassbender. “And again, negotiations are about give and take.”

WATCH: What is proposal “E80″ and why is it so contentious?

Premier Christy Clark said later in the day she thinks she can get a negotiated deal before she travels to India for a trade mission that’s scheduled to start Oct. 9.

“I’m very hopeful that schools will be back, in fact, I’m certain schools will be back in session by the time I go to India,” she said.

– With files from The Canadian Press

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