Education workers represented by ETFO reach tentative contract deal


The Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario has reached a tentative contract agreement with the government for the education workers it represents.

The union does not yet have a deal for its 80,000 teacher members.

ETFO represents 3,500 education workers such as early childhood educators and education support personnel, and details of the tentative deal and a date for a ratification vote are set to be shared with those members later.

President Karen Brown says it shows that tentative agreements are possible when all parties are genuinely engaged and when the legal bargaining process is given a chance.

ETFO has rejected a proposal tentatively agreed to by the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation that could see binding arbitration used to avoid the possibility of a strike.

Teachers represented by ETFO are voting until Oct. 17 on whether to give their union a strike mandate.

Education Minister Stephen Lecce said his focus is on keeping kids in class.

“While we are making progress, we are again urging all remaining teacher unions to come to the table and sign a deal that ensures children benefit from uninterrupted learning for the next three years, with an enhanced focus on strengthening reading, writing, and math skills,” he wrote in a statement.

Banner image: THE CANADIAN PRESS/Cole Burston

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 22, 2023.