B.C. teachers say no to April report cards

The conflict between B.C.'s teachers and their employers remains heated as the two sides now battle over the issue of how many report cards will be issued this year.

Teachers say only one final report card should be issued

School report cards are due at the end of this month, according to the B.C. Public School Employers’ Association — but the teachers union is refusing to have its members issue them.

The employers say that's illegal and they're going to the Labour Relations Board to seek a ruling forcing the teachers’ hand.

B.C. Teachers Federation President Susan Lambert says teachers will be issuing just one report card — at the end of the school year, with final marks.

Lambert says employers’ association doesn't have the right to re-schedule report cards that were due during the strike.

The Labour Relations Board set essential service levels for the teachers’ job action that began in September while contract negotiations between the union and the employers dragged on.

"And we complied with that order," said Lambert. "And and we did what was essential. And we did not do report cards"

But employers’ association Chair Melanie Joy says it's no different than the mail backlog after a postal strike.

"Eventually, they do have to get delivered after the strike is over and it's the same as with report cards," Joy said.

Three report cards are usually issued throughout a school year, one in the fall, one in spring and a final report in June.

Joy says  parents need all the marks to chart their children's progress during the year.

The issue will go the LRB on Monday.

The government extended its contract agreement with the teachers in March after one year of negotiations failed to resolve several major contract issues.

A mediator has been appointed as part of the government’s back-to-work legislation, but the BCTF also is challenging the choice of mediator in a separate application to the LRB.

With files from the CBC's Mike Clarke