Apr 15, 2015

By Kim O'Hare

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Parents of public high school students in Durham region are being warned to prepare for a possible teachers’ strike as early as Monday.

Education Minister Liz Sandals says she’s disappointed the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation has walked away from contract talks with the Public School Boards Association.

Sandals says Durham is the only board that would be in a legal strike position that quickly, and urges the union to return to the bargaining table.

The minister says she’s optimistic because OSSTF used the word “suspend” to announce it was withdrawing from talks “until the employer gets serious,” taking it as a sign the union simply “paused” the negotiations.

Earlier this month, the OSSTF threatened to withdraw services at seven school boards; Peel, Durham, Halton, Ottawa-Carleton, Waterloo, Rainbow in Sudbury and Lakehead in Thunder Bay.

The Liberal government insists there will be no funding for wage increases for teachers or any public sector workers until it eliminates a $10.9-billion deficit.

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