Thursday, June 12, 2014
Strike Notice Given
with June 17 job action if no deal reached
Released by the BCTF
a historic and decisive province-wide 86% vote that saw the BCTF’s highest
ever turnout, the BC Teachers’ Federation has served notice to escalate job
action on Tuesday, June 17 to a full withdrawal of services, BCTF President
Jim Iker announced today.
“This week’s vote made it clear that BC teachers care deeply about the state
of public education and their ability to meet the needs of all their
students,” said Iker. “As well, it showed how firmly teachers are committed
to doing what’s necessary to reach a fair deal.
“After 12 years of deep cuts, 3,500 teaching positions lost, and 200 schools
closed, we are urging this government to reinvest in public education.
Teachers are doing their utmost in an underfunded and under-resourced
system, but students are not getting the support or one-on-one time they
need. Our kids deserve so much more.
“There are still several days left, during which both sides can hunker down,
reach a settlement, avoid a full-scale strike, and end the government’s
lockout. We’re ready to move, but my message to Christy Clark is, come to
the table with new funding, an open mind, and the flexibility needed to
reach a fair settlement that will support teachers and students.”
Iker explained that the BCTF has provided the employer with notice that the
full withdrawal of services will commence on Tuesday, June 17. In addition,
the BCTF has provided notice that Stage 2 job action will be extended to
Monday, June 16, with all teachers participating in study sessions
province-wide. Teachers will gather together off school property. Schools
will not be picketed, but teachers will not be on site.
For the balance of this week, rotating strikes will continue according to
the schedule announced earlier. Teachers remain locked out by their employer
during recess, lunch, and 45 minutes before and after school, preventing
them from doing their regular work during lockout hours.
“To get a fair deal and avert a full-scale strike, BC teachers are looking
for improvements to class size, class composition, and staffing levels for
specialist teachers to increase one-on-one time for students,” said Iker.
“In addition to improvements to student learning conditions, a fair deal
must also include a fair wage increase for teachers.”
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Thursday, June 12, 2014
Minister’s statement on BCTF
issuing full strike notice
VICTORIA – Education Minister Peter Fassbender issued the following
statement on the British Columbia Teachers' Federation (BCTF) issuing
“While this is disappointing news for students and parents, the strike
notice was not unexpected.
“That’s why the British Columbia Public School Employers' Association (BCPSEA)
applied last week to designate provincial exams and report cards for senior
grads as an essential service. We’re pleased to learn that last night the
Labour Relations Board agreed that provincial exams are an essential
“That means students in Grades 10 to 12 will be able to write their exams as
scheduled and Grade 12 students will receive their final marks in a timely
“Our main focus though, is to get to an agreement by June 30, 2014, and put
this disruption behind us. The BCTF has said they want to avoid the strike
and they are ready to bargain through the weekend. BCPSEA will be there.
“It took support staff unions five days of hard bargaining to get to an
agreement. We can achieve the same thing with teachers if the BCTF comes to
the table with realistic expectations and a willingness to find solutions.
“Up to now, the BCTF’s total compensation demands have been four times more
than other recent settlements. The BCTF has indicated that they will submit
a new wage proposals and BCPSEA looks forward to receiving those.
“Teachers deserve a raise but it must be in line with recent agreements
covering nearly 150,000 public sector workers – including 34,000 school
support workers. BCPSEA has a fair wage offer on the table that includes a
$1,200 signing bonus if we get to an agreement by June 30, 2014.
“I know everyone involved wants to head into the summer with the assurance
that our education system is on a path to long-term stability and focussed
on student outcomes.”
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