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Labour Relations Update - November 29, 2019

OCDSB Trustees recommend school closures in event of OSSTF walkout

OCDSB Trustees approved recommendations, including the closure of elementary and secondary schools to students, in the event of labour action taken by the Ontario Secondary Schools Teachers’ Federation (OSSTF).

The OSSTF has announced that it intends to hold a one-day full walkout from all members on Wednesday, December 4, unless an agreement is reached. If this occurs, all OCDSB elementary and secondary schools will be closed to students. Parents should have contingency plans in place for Wednesday.

The OSSTF represents staff in both OCDSB secondary and elementary schools. This includes: secondary teachers and secondary occasional teachers, and education workers including, office, clerical and technical staff; custodial and maintenance staff; educational assistants; early childhood educators; adult education workers; professional support staff, and administrative staff). Both the teacher and education worker bargaining units are in negotiations.

It is possible that one group could reach an agreement while others continue bargaining. The following scenarios are possible:

  • Full OSSTF walkout – elementary and secondary schools closed to students;
  • OSSTF education workers walkout – elementary and secondary schools closed to students;
  • OSSTF secondary teachers and occasional teachers walkout – only secondary schools closed to students;

As soon as information is known it will be shared. Families should plan for December 4th with the understanding that the full closure of elementary and secondary schools is possible and transportation would not be available for students on that day. This would include the Extended Day Programs operated by the OCDSB.  Extended Day programs operated in schools by third party service providers may continue to operate, subject to certain conditions. Parents should contact their program coordinator to confirm operation. The community use of schools permits will be cancelled on that day.

The final decision of whether to close schools depends on the outcome of labour negotiations at the central bargaining tables, which could go late into Tuesday evening or early Wednesday morning.

Parents are asked to monitor their email and local media for updates on Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning for an OCDSB final announcement of school closures. The OCDSB will also share updates on its Labour Negotiations webpage and OCDSB social media accounts.

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