Elementary teachers’ union and province to return to bargaining table Sept. 1

Global News

TORONTO – The union representing 76,000 public elementary school teachers says it will head back to the bargaining table with the province on Sept. 1.

Valerie Dugale, a spokeswoman with the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario, says she wouldn’t comment further on the upcoming negotiations.

In May the union began a work-to-rule campaign and have cited wages, class size, hiring practices and teacher preparation time as major points of contention in the negotiations.

The union has been in a legal strike position since May 10.

Talks between the province and the Ontario English Catholic Teachers have resumed and talks with the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation will resume next week.

Education Minister Liz Sandals said Wednesday she is optimistic new contract agreements will be reached with Ontario’s big teachers unions before the start of classes on Sept. 8.

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“Our government is focused on starting the school year without disruptions and with full programming available to Ontario students,” she said.

“We are currently either engaged in bargaining or have dates to bargain with each of the four teacher federations, and we remain committed to utilizing the remaining weeks of summer to engage in productive negotiations to reach agreements.”