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Ontario elementary teachers ratify contract deal with Ford government

Click to play video: 'Ontario government announces tentative agreement reached with ETFO' Ontario government announces tentative agreement reached with ETFO
WATCH ABOVE: Ontario government announces tentative agreement reached with ETFO (March 21, 2020) – Mar 21, 2020

TORONTO – Ontario’s elementary teachers have ratified their new contract with the provincial government.

The Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario says 97 per cent of its teacher members voted in favour of the three-year deal.

It will see teachers get salary increases of one per cent a year for three years, and four per cent annual increases to benefits.

READ MORE: Ontario elementary teachers’ union, province reach tentative agreement

The agreement also contains a two-year, $89-million “Support for Students” fund, which ETFO says will create about 434 teacher positions, to address areas such as special education, English language learning and mental-health initiatives.

The deal guarantees the one-teacher, one-early childhood educator model for full-day kindergarten for the life of the agreement, and says there will be no changes to elementary class sizes.

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ETFO president Sam Hammond says in a statement that while the negotiations were “prolonged and difficult,” teachers stood firm in the face of cuts.

Education Minister Stephen Lecce says in a statement that the government’s goal was to reach deals with the teachers’ union that advanced the priorities of students and parents.

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