Unless a deal with the province is reached, all four of Ontario’s teachers’ unions will hold a province-wide one-day strike. This will be the first time all four unions were out of the classroom at the same time since 1997.
Members of the Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario (ETFO), The Ontario Secondary School Teachers Federation (OSSTF), the Ontario English Catholic Teachers’ Association (OECTA) and the Association des Enseignantes et des Enseignants Franco-Ontariens (AEFO) could walk the picket line on Friday the 21st, as the unions and province struggle to see eye-to-eye on issues of class size, online learning, salary, and special education provisions.
The strike will affect about 5,000 schools across 72 school boards, including the Simcoe County District School Board, the Simcoe Muskoka Catholic District School Board, the Penetanguishene Protestant Separate School Board, as well as the Trillium Lakelands District School Board, and the York Region District School Board. This one-day strike would affect elementary and secondary schools, as well as in-school daycare programming.
“Our focus is on keeping students in class, as they deserve better.” said Education Minster Stephen Lecce in response to the strike announcement. “That is why I am calling on the teachers’ union leaders to accept private mediation today and end this needless escalation. Parents are losing patience with the disruption in their lives, the inconsistency in their children’s education, and the financial impact of scrambling for child care.”