September 18, 2015

Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario announces phase three work-to-rule across Ontario to begin Sept. 21

On Sept. 18, 2015, the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario (ETFO) announced phase three of work-to-rule in Ontario. Phase three will begin on Monday, Sept. 21, 2015, unless progress is made at the provincial, central bargaining table. Phase two of ETFO work-to-rule is currently taking place in all public schools across Ontario.  

During phase two, elementary teachers did not:
  • plan, organize or participate in field trips
  • plan, organize or participate in fundraising activities
  • collect monies
  • attend open houses or ‘Meet the Teacher’ nights outside of the instructional day
  • participate in board professional development, other than mandatory first-aid training, Sabrina’s Law and WHMIS
  • collect or distribute to students any paperwork required by the school or school board
Phase two job action will continue during phase three of work-to-rule. As of Monday, Sept. 21, elementary teachers will also not:
  • fill in for an absent teacher or take on additional students during another teacher’s absence
  • update classroom websites/blogs, complete or distribute class newsletters
  • update Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) by the deadline. ETFO has directed teachers to make modifications for students and to complete IEPs at their own pace during the instructional day.
  • participate in any in-school meetings or professional learning activities on the next PA Day. Instead, they will use the time for their own self-directed activities within the classroom/school.
  • prepare report card comments, complete or package the Progress Report. ETFO has directed teachers to provide the principal/vice-principal with a hard copy class list with the ratings for the Learning Skills and Work Habits section, and the required subject area section completed for each child. Teachers of alternative programs will provide one brief comment per area.
  • conduct parent interviews related to the Progress Report unless the teacher or occasional teacher identifies a concern about a child’s progress
  • participate in extracurricular activities on Wednesdays​
In addition, on Wednesdays, ETFO has directed elementary teachers to wear a solidarity colour, their ETFO buttons, t-shirts and ball caps. 

At this time, ETFO has informed teachers that unless significant progress has been made at the provincial, central bargaining table by the end of September, they will begin phase four. This means that during the month of October, they MAY begin rotating one-day strikes. If that happens, we will provide you with as much notice as possible about the status of schools. 

We will continue to monitor the situation and its impact on elementary students:
As a board, we respect our elementary teachers and value their work with students. We remain hopeful that the fair, negotiated provincial agreements with all of our employee groups will be reached. Thank you for your patience, support and understanding.​

Janet McDougald
Chair, Peel District School Board 
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