Revelstoke teachers rally last Wednesday

BC teachers, government reach tentative agreement

After more than a year of negotiations, a tentative agreement has been reached between B.C.'s teachers and the government.

After more than a year of negotiations, a tentative agreement has been reached between B.C.’s teachers and the government.

The BC Teachers’ Federation (BCTF) and B.C. Public School Employers’ Association (BCPSEA) announced Tuesday evening that a two-year tentative agreement had been reached between the parties. The agreement still requires ratification.

“This has been a difficult year for all those involved with the public school system,” said Melanie Joy, Chair of BCPSEA. “We hope that boards and teachers will ratify this agreement and that we can all look forward to the new school year in September with a focus on what’s really important — delivering the best possible educational experience for our students.”

The executive of the BC Teacher’s Federation is recommending ratification of the deal to its members but seemed less than enthusiastic about the agreement.

“We have been able to achieve some modest improvements but, above all, we succeeded in getting government take its concession demands off the table,” said Susan Lambert, the president of the BCTF. “We’ve concluded this agreement in order to prevent government from imposing a contract that would further erode teachers’ hard-won rights and do more harm to students’ learning conditions.”

While details of the agreement were not released, according to the BCTF news release on the the deal, which covers the 2011-12 and 2012-13 school years, the agreement imposes a wage freeze over the two years. It also does not address issues surrounding class size and composition the BCTF hoped to include in the contract.

The agreement comes after more than a year of negotiations, which included nearly 100 bargaining sessions, 16 of which came under the auspices of mediator Dr. Charles Jago.

The BCTF engaged in varying levels of job action over the course of negotiations. At the start of the school year teachers withheld from doing administrative work, such as supervision outside of class, meeting with principals and filling out report cards.

In March, the teachers went on strike for three days, after which the government imposed back to work legislation and a mediator. The teachers countered by holding back from after school activities, such as coaching sports’ teams.

Last Wednesday, June 20, teachers held rallies across the province marking one year without a contract.

Education Minister George Abbott said he was pleased that an agreement was reached. “The term of the agreement runs until June 30, 2013, sets out improved language to manage leave provisions, and is consistent with government’s net zero mandate,” he said. “In addition, the parties agreed to further discuss and seek mutually agreeable improvements on key policy issues to provide students with the best education possible.”

 

Just Posted

Fire prevention in Revelstoke: ‘Look. Listen. Learn.’ What does it mean?

Home fires today can burn faster than ever. Occupants may have as… Continue reading

Revelstoke Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence nominees announced

The nominees for the annual Revelstoke Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Awards… Continue reading

‘Police are ready’ for legal pot, say Canadian chiefs

But Canadians won’t see major policing changes as pot becomes legal

Revelstoke City Council makes moves to protect the look of the downtown core

Revelstoke City Council has issued a development permit for a three story… Continue reading

Rick Mercer says pot is ‘excruciatingly boring’

Comedian hopes Canadians will move onto something else once marijuana is legalized

Federal government tables bill to transform prisoner segregation

Administrative and disciplinary segregation will be eliminated by Ottawa

CFL expecting little to no impact from legalization of marijuana in Canada

The league tests only for performance-enhancing substances and not recreational drugs like cannabis

BCTF wins grievance over teacher shortage in public schools

Arbitrator found Chilliwack school district did not hire enough on-call teachers or librarians

Workers at BC Interior mill strike as negotiations resume in Kelowna

Picket lines went up at 4 a.m Tuesday, Oct. 16 at Tolko Lakeview Division in Williams Lake

Toronto Police ID B.C. man as naked shark tank jumper

David Weaver, of Nelson, is wanted on mischief and assault charges

In Florida, families seeking the missing amid storm damage

Five days after the hurricane slammed into the Florida Panhandle, people are struggling to locate friends and loved ones.

Prince Harry and Meghan start Aussie tour with baby gifts

Prince Harry and his wife Meghan are on a 16-day tour of Australia and the South Pacific.

Most Read