Striking support workers at Ontario colleges reached a tentative agreement late Sunday night.

The employees who have been on picket lines since the start of the month at the province's 24 community colleges will be returning to work this Tuesday.

The deal, which must still be ratified, was reached following two-days of intensive bargaining by negotiators for management and the Ontario Public Service Employees Union.

The 8,000 workers went on strike just before the school year started and picket lines have made life difficult for a number of students on campus.

Rod Bemister, chair of the OPSEU bargaining team, said the union secured key contract proposals it had brought forward and will recommend that members approve the tentative deal.

Gerry Barker, chairman of the Colleges' Bargaining Team says they are pleased they reached a negotiated settlement and look forward to employees returning to work.

"I applaud the tentative deal reached tonight by the negotiating teams," OPSEU President Warren (Smokey) Thomas, said in a release.

"We said all along that a fair and just agreement was only possible when the two sides could sit across the bargaining table from each other and I'm pleased to report that was the case."

Details of the agreement will not be available until after a ratification vote.