Ontario Public School Boards' Association agrees to accept Minister's final offer to resolve Elementary Teacher negotiations



    TORONTO, Feb. 10 /CNW/ - At noon on Tuesday, February 10, Minister of
Education Kathleen Wynne offered the Elementary Teachers' Federation of
Ontario (ETFO) and the Ontario Public School Boards' Association (OPSBA) a
renewed and final opportunity to reach a fully funded Provincial Discussion
Table (PDT) agreement that would set the parameters for successful local
collective bargaining between public school boards and their 73,000 elementary
teachers.
    OPSBA has agreed to accept the Minister's final offer for a number of
reasons. A four year, fully funded deal provides a welcome measure of
stability in schools for students and teachers. The deal will give staffing
enhancements which translate into better program opportunities for students.
    "OPSBA appreciates the government's efforts to bring about a reasonable,
fully funded settlement," said Loralea Carruthers, vice president of OPSBA.
"Our students and parents are depending on all of us to find a compromise
solution that ensures stable learning environments in our schools."

    
    The Minister's offer includes:

    -   Guaranteed salary increases compounded to 10.4% over the next
        four years (2, 2, 3, 3%).

    -   Additional teachers in an era of declining enrolment, providing for:
        -  Targeted class size reductions in Grades 4 to 8;
        -  Student Success teachers and Literacy and Numeracy coaches in
           Grades 7 and 8;
        -  Additional arts and specialist teachers; and
        -  40 minutes per week additional Planning Time per teacher.
    

    This offer requires both parties to move from the positions they held
when discussions broke off last December. In light of today's economic
climate, the offer is reasonable, and paves the way for 4-year, fully funded
collective agreements that support teaching, improved student learning and
safety.

    (To view Minister Wynne's offer in its entirety, go to www.opsba.org or
the provincial government's website at http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/ )





For further information:

For further information: Jeff Sprang, (416) 340-2540


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