Toronto

Elementary teachers in Ontario ratify 2-year contract extension

Elementary teachers in Ontario have ratified a contract extension that gives them raises, caps kindergarten class sizes and gives the provincial government labour peace.

Deal means no contentious education bargaining before the June 2018 provincial election

Elementary teachers in Ontario have ratified a contract extension that gives them raises, caps kindergarten class sizes and gives the provincial government labour peace. (Shutterstock/Syda Productions)

Elementary teachers in Ontario have ratified a contract extension that gives them raises, caps kindergarten class sizes and gives the provincial government labour peace.

Teachers' and education workers' contracts were set to expire this August, but the Liberal government negotiated two-year extensions with them, which takes the deals to August 2019.

That means no contentious education bargaining before the June 2018 election, and no repeat of the work-to-rule campaigns and docked pay that happened during the last round.

The Elementary School Teachers' Federation vote means the Ontario Secondary School Teachers' Federation is the only major union still to ratify their tentative deal.

Teachers to get 4% raises over 2 years

In details of all of the deals made public so far, the teachers and support staff will get four per cent raises over two years.

The ETFO deal also contains a government promise to introduce caps on full-day kindergarten class sizes at 30 next year and 29 the year after.

It also contains government funding of $89 million over the two years for education supports and hiring special education teachers.

And in addition to the four per cent raises over two years, it includes a 0.5% lump sum on wages earned in the 2016-2017 school year for all members.

"These extended agreements have achieved important improvements in the working conditions of ETFO members and the learning conditions of Ontario's elementary students," ETFO President Sam Hammond said in a news release.

ETFO represents 78,000 elementary public school teachers, occasional teachers and education professionals in Ontario.

With files from CBC News

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