Class size issue not resolved by B.C. court challenge
The B.C. Teachers' Federation is sticking to its demand that the provincial government dump 2002 legislation on class sizes, following a decision by the courts not to issue a new ruling on the issue.
In April, Justice Susan Griffin ruled the government had illegally removed the teachers' right to bargain class size and composition. Last month the union asked the judge to clarify that ruling after negotiations with the government failed to reach an agreement on what the ruling meant.
Then on Wednesday Justice Griffin said it's already clear and said she would not issue any clarification.
BCTF president Susan Lambert says, in light of a Supreme Court decision, the union will insist that the laws are invalid and should struck from the books. Lambert says she was hoping for more, but she still feels this puts the onus on the government.
The BCTF halted bargaining on a new contract while awaiting clarification of the earlier decision that said teacher's rights were violated when the issues of class size and composition were stripped from bargaining.
Lambert hopes contract talks can now resume, but warns that the government's offer of $165 million dollars to help special needs students does not resolve matters raised by the original court ruling.
B.C.'s teachers have been engaged in job action since the start of the school year, after their contract expired this summer and they failed to reach a new agreement with the province's school districts.
With files from The Canadian Press