The Art of Resistance
e. 421 - #CutsHurtKids: Ontario Public School Teachers Strike ft. Julius
Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario
Ontario public school teachers have been without a contract since the end of August and contract talks with the provincial government have essentially stalled, with the last talk being held on December 19th, 2019. Key issues being disputed include class-size increases, mandatory online courses for high-school students, funding for special-education supports, a hiring regulation that gives supply teachers with more seniority an edge in getting hired for long-term teaching positions, and protection of the full-day kindergarten program and staffing.
On February 21st, The Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario, Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation, the Ontario English Catholic Teachers’ Association and the Association of Franco-Ontarian Teachers, held a joint one-day strike where teachers walked off the job together and joined mass rallies across the province and here at Queen’s Park. This is the first time since 1997 that teachers and education workers from Ontario's main education unions were out of their classrooms on the same day.
Today, we’re speaking with Julius, chairperson of the labour committee at the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario or ETFO.