TORONTO – Ontario Education Minister Stephen Lecce says the government has entered into a preliminary contract with the Ontario Elementary Teachers` Federation. QUEEN`S PARK – The Ontario Elementary Teachers` Federation (ETFO) and the Ontario government announced late on Friday, March 20, that they had reached an interim agreement that, if ratified, would end strikes on Manitoulin Island elementary schools. ETFO was able to accommodate Ontario, the Ontario Public School Boards` Association and the Council of Trustees` Associations. The details will not be made public until union members can vote on the proposed agreement. “Our government is pleased to announce an interim agreement between the Crown, teachers and education workers and school board associations,” Education Minister Stephen Lecce said in a statement. “This preliminary ETFO agreement creates additional momentum for the agreements and progress that students deserve after being signed last week with the Ontario Association of Enhancers (OECD),” Lecce said in a press release released Friday. This round of negotiations has been exceptionally long and difficult, but we have finally reached an interim agreement that believes ETFO is fair and meets the needs of our members,” said SAM Hammond, President of ETFO. All strikes were halted until the vote. Although the union`s board of directors has accepted the principle of the agreement, the 83,000 teachers represented by the union have the final say. The union, which represents public primary school teachers in Ontario and the province, reached an interim agreement after months of barganing. An ETFO vote between teachers and casual teachers will be held on the provisional agreement, with the results of the vote expected in mid-November.
If the central agreement is ratified, it does not necessarily mean the end of job interruptions. Ontario`s education system operates on a two-tiered model, with a central contract covering major universal themes, and 76 local units that enter into their own contracts with their respective principals or boards of directors. Local contracts generally deal with issues that affect schools in a unique way across regions. “ETFO will next week review the details of its interim central agreements and the ratification process with local leaders and ETFO members.” ETFO obtains interim agreements at centralized negotiating tables. @etfopresident said: “We are very grateful for the unwavering support and solidarity of our members and public opinion who continue to work for public education… READ t.co/YYmyh5UdAk #onpoli #Onted pic.twitter.com/0WaZfzcgwe The Ontario Elementary Teachers` Federation (ETFO) has centralised preliminary agreements with the Ontario government, the Ontario Public Schools Association and the Board of Trustee Associations. Ontario entered into a preliminary contract with its largest teachers` union on Friday after a highly controversial round of negotiations. The Ontario English Catholic Teachers` Association reached a preliminary agreement with the province on March 12. The agreement with the Elementary Teachers` Federation of Ontario (EFTO) means that the government has now entered into preliminary agreements with two of the four major unions. At this stage, ETFO will not comment further on the interim central agreements with the media. The Ontario Primary Education Teachers` Union has reached a preliminary agreement with the province. In a statement to members of the Ontario Elementary Teachers` Federation (ETFO), the union said local presidents and chief negotiators will review the terms of the agreement Wednesday in a phone call to City Hall. Education Minister Stephen Lecce said he was “pleased” with the interim agreement, which includes teaching assistants and the school board foundation board.