Sep 12, 2012

By Jane Brown

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Students at Ontario’s public elementary schools and high schools might see disruptions to their extra-curricular activities, as early as today. 

Ken Coran, the President of the Secondary School Teachers Federation is calling on the province’s 60,000 high school teachers to take a pause in any volunteer activities for today and wear black clothes or armbands.   The move is designed to protest yesterday’s passage of Bill 115, which legislates a 2 year wage freeze and reduced benefits along with a ban on strikes and lockouts. 

Sam Hammond is the president of the Elementary Teachers Federation.  He’s instituting a protest called “McGuinty Mondays”, where teachers are asked not to attend any in-school meetings or meetings with the school system or ministry officials on Mondays.  He says, “teachers feel betrayed by this Liberal government that we’ve worked so closely with since 2003.  They have been saying across the province, for weeks now, that if this bill passes, that it can’t be business as usual in our schools.” As for extra curricular activities, Hammond says he’s also asking teachers to take a pause on voluntary activities.  Students who attend the province’s public french schools and catholic schools will not be affected by these protests.  Their union presidents have signed on to a similar deal passed yesterday at Queens Park.

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