York Region, Niagara, Hamilton high school teachers reject deals

Signing a deal would be a ‘sellout‘ to Ontario’s Bill 115: Teachers

High school teachers who are members of the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation (OSSTF) in York Region, Niagara, and Hamilton Ont., have rejected tentative agreements with their school boards.

The deal in York Region was announced on Nov. 17, the Hamilton deal on Nov. 18 and the Niagara deal on Nov. 19.

While teachers at the Upper Grand District School Board, near Guelph, Ont., have ratified their agreements, it is expected that teachers in York Region, Niagara and Hamilton will continue job actions that could see them withdrawing from parent-teacher interviews, after-school activities and department meetings.

“I am disappointed that OSSTF teachers in York and Niagara did not ratify locally bargained collective agreements,” Broten told the Toronto Star. She said she was pleased with the outcome at Upper Grand.

At a meeting on Nov. 26, many teachers from York Region argued signing a deal would be a “sellout” to Bill 115, the Star reported, which many teachers have been criticizing since its passing in September, calling it unconstitutional. The bill freezes the majority of teachers’ wages and takes away their right to strike for two years.

The bill currently faces a constitutional challenge from several unions, including the OSSTF, the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario and the Canadian Union of Public Employees.

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