LINDSAY, ON, Feb. 14, 2013 /CNW/ - As an Ontario Labour Relations Board
(OLRB) hearing co-initiated by Trillium Lakelands District School Board
(TLDSB) finished its eighth day, Elementary Teachers' Federation of
Ontario (ETFO) Trillium Lakelands local President Steve Colliver
expressed concern about the school board's involvement in an
unnecessary legal action.
"Many Trillium Lakelands teachers spend a significant amount of their
own money each year to supplement small school budgets and ensure
classrooms are fully equipped for students," said President Colliver.
"To have their employer divert hundreds of thousands of dollars of
money meant for classrooms to pay the fees of four high-priced Toronto
lawyers is offensive to my members."
"I hope that Trillium Lakelands parents and taxpayers are asking some
hard questions about the priorities of TLDSB. How, for example, can
this board find money to pay the hotel costs for staff to attend
protracted legal hearings in Toronto when the educational supports that
at-risk students need to succeed aren't being provided?"
Colliver also noted that teacher well-being is being ignored by TLDSB.
"We have a long-standing teacher morale problem in this school board
that has its origins in the hyper-combative management style adopted by
senior management. The board's involvement in this OLRB application is
yet another example of this approach and has caused a further
deterioration of morale."
"There are 31 public school boards in Ontario," observed Colliver.
"Twenty-nine of them are trying to build bridges with teachers during
this challenging time. The TLDSB has chosen a different approach, and
many teachers have contacted me to express anger, disappointment and
frustration with their employer."
"The board's motto is 'Better together in a safe and caring learning
community'. Teachers are wondering how filing this OLRB complaint is
supposed to make them feel safe or cared for by their employer" said
Colliver. "They are questioning the board's motives and are, quite
frankly, seeing this move as a veiled threat."
"But if this board thinks that taking ETFO to the OLRB will intimidate
Trillium Lakelands teachers from making choices about what they do
during their personal time," continued President Colliver, "it has made
a serious miscalculation."
ETFO Trillium Lakelands Teacher Local represents over 740 elementary
teachers employed by Trillium Lakelands District School Board.
SOURCE: Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario
For further information:
Steve Colliver, 705-324-4751 - firstname.lastname@example.org