Ontario Strengthening Education Sector for Students
Improved Collective Bargaining Process Supports Stronger, More Stable Schools
Today, Bill 122, The School Boards Collective Bargaining Act, 2014 passed third reading in the Ontario legislature. The legislation will allow the province to move forward with its commitment to make the collective bargaining process in the education sector clearer and more reliable, to support stronger, more stable schools for Ontario's students.
The new legislation - the fifteenth government bill to pass since February 2013 - establishes a clearer process for addressing key collective bargaining issues and creates better defined roles and responsibilities for all participants during labour negotiations in the province's education sector.
The bargaining framework features central tables to negotiate major issues with provincewide impacts. Local bargaining will continue between school boards, teachers' federations and education worker unions on all other issues.
Strengthening the education sector for Ontario's students is part of the government's economic plan that is creating jobs for today and tomorrow. The comprehensive plan and its six priorities focus on Ontario's greatest strengths - its people and strategic partnerships.
- Management representation at central tables will consist of provincial trustees’ associations representing school boards, bargaining in concert with government. Employees will be represented by teachers’ federations or provincial education worker unions.
- Ratification will be required by all three participants – government, trustees’ associations and teachers’ federations or education worker unions – for any central agreement.
- The province consulted extensively with trustees’ associations, teachers’ federations and education worker unions on the development of this legislation.
- A term of three years will be applied to all school board collective agreements, providing stability in the system. The Ontario government is permitted to alter the term, but only after consulting with education sector stakeholders.
- Almost all existing collective agreements expire on Aug. 31, 2014.
“This made-in-Ontario approach was developed after extensive feedback from our education partners. The hallmark of this new labour framework is providing a clearer and more consistent process for all parties involved in future labour negotiations. This shows we’re committed to strengthening our valued relationships with education partners and protecting the tremendous gains we’ve made in education, while providing an innovative model that works for all of Ontario.”