Toronto Catholic elementary teachers threaten to strike next week, council says – Toronto | The Canadian News

Catholic elementary school teachers in Toronto are threatening to strike next week if a preliminary agreement can not be reached with the board.

In a letter sent to families on Wednesday, the Toronto Catholic District School Board (TCDSB) said on Tuesday night that they had received notice from the Toronto Elementary Catholic Teachers union (TECT) of a “full strike at one or more schools” that Monday begins.

Read more:

Education Minister in Ontario tells Catholic teachers’ union in Toronto ‘enough is enough’

The board said it was “shocked to receive TECT’s notice,” adding that it was “disappointed” that TECT “chose to disrupt student learning by threatening to strike.”

The board said the union was threatening to strike over two main issues: absenteeism and staffing levels and assignments.

Story continues below ad

“Absence remains a serious issue affecting the classroom experience for students,” the letter reads.

The board claims TECT wants to prevent it from “supporting teachers while also improving attendance at work.”

The board also said the TECT union wants to limit the way the council determines staff levels and classroom assignments.

Click to play video: 'Ontario releases data on school absenteeism as children return to personal learning'

Ontario releases data on school absenteeism as children return to personal learning

Ontario releases data on school absenteeism as children return to personal learning

“We recognize how difficult the past few years have been for staff, students and families during the pandemic and appreciate all that our teachers continue to do to support students during this difficult time,” the letter reads.

However, the TCDSB said it was “inexcusable” that the TECT union “wanted to stop student learning by threatening to strike after all that students went through during the pandemic to prevent the Council from providing absence support and managing staffing processes.”

Story continues below ad

The TCDSB said it was available to meet “today or any day” to reach an agreement with the TECT union.

Global News reached out to TECT for comment, but did not hear back at time of publication.

According to the TECT website, the union represents more than 4,000 elementary teachers working in the TCDSB.

Read more:

Some teachers in Ontario refuse to work on school COVID concerns

In a statement sent to Global News by email on Wednesday, Education Minister Stephen Lecce of Ontario said the “most recent provocations by the Toronto Catholic Elementary Teachers’ Union to strike and then close schools are wrong. . “

“These teacher union strikes are an insult to the interests of children who deserve to be in school,” Lecce said.

“On behalf of tens of thousands of families seeking stability as Ontario gets through these Omicron challenges: turn off the strikes,” he continued.

Click to play video: 'Back to school takes a toll on teachers in Ontario'

Back to school takes a toll on teachers in Ontario

Back to school takes a toll on teachers in Ontario

The news of the potential strike comes just a week after the TCDSB reopened its schools for personal learning.

Story continues below ad

Students and staff learned from a distance after the province closed schools after the holidays in an effort to stem the spread of COVID-19.

A massive snowstorm last Monday also forced schools to remain closed until mid-week.

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Leave a Comment