Association des enseignantes et des enseignants franco-ontariens (AEFO) Central Agreement Now Ratified
The central agreement with teachers represented by the Association des enseignantes et des enseignants franco-ontariens (AEFO) has been ratified by school boards and the union and agreed to by the Government of Ontario. AEFO represents approximately 11,950 members in the French-language Catholic and French-language public K-12 education sector.
The central agreement with AEFO teachers demonstrates the government's commitment to reaching deals that protect our children's futures and invest in their potential. The government also agreed to ratification of agreements with the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) on November 4, 2019, the Education Workers' Alliance of Ontario (EWAO) on February 4, 2020, the Ontario English Catholic Teachers' Association (OECTA) on April 8, 2020, the Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario (ETFO) on April 28, 2020 and the Ontario Council of Educational Workers (OCEW) on May 4, 2020.
These agreements were reached while respecting taxpayers, students and families, and recognizing the important contributions of frontline workers in our education system. It reflects the government's commitment to a fiscally sustainable publicly funded education system.
Collective agreements between school boards and AEFO bargaining units include both central and local terms. The central terms are now resolved. In order to complete the collective bargaining process, local terms need to be reached between each school board and its AEFO bargaining units.
The three-year collective agreements will be effective September 1, 2019 through to August 31, 2022.
HIGHLIGHTS OF THE CENTRAL AGREEMENT
Compensation and Benefits: Under the agreement, AEFO members will receive a one per cent increase to wages and salaries per year, for three years. Consistent with Protecting a Sustainable Public Sector for Future Generations Act, 2019, the agreement allows for annual inflationary increases to the funding for existing benefits so members will not experience a reduction to their existing benefits coverage, along with a one per cent enhancement.
Support for Students Fund: Total system priorities investments in the amount of approximately $13.4 million over the 2020-21 and 2021-22 school years. The fund shall be allocated to create additional teacher positions to provide school boards with more flexibility to address special education, mental health initiatives, unique learning needs as wells as STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) programming.
Full Day Kindergarten and Class Size: The government is committed to maintaining full-day kindergarten and retaining the existing staffing model. There are no changes to class size for grades 1-8 for the 2020-21 and 2021-22 school years. Provincial funding and legislated class size restrictions provide for an average class size of 23 for students in grades 9-12 for the 2020-21 and 2021-22 school years, which is effectively the same as the 2019-20 school year.
Online Learning: The government is moving forward with a requirement that Ontario students entering Grade 9 in the 2020-2021 school year will be required to complete two mandatory online learning courses in order to graduate. Exemptions to the requirement can be made for reasons such as accommodating individual students with special education needs, students who have issues accessing technology and newcomers to Ontario who enter secondary school after Grade 9. The request for an exemption can be made by a parent/guardian or the student who has reached the age of 18 through a set process.
Hiring Practices: Seniority-based hiring is maintained. Boards now have more flexibility to consider additional candidates that are not on the Long-Term Occasional Teaching (LTO) list if fewer than the prescribed number of qualified LTOs have applied.
Health and Safety: Teachers will be provided with one half-day of violence prevention training in each of the 2020-2021 and 2021-2022 school years.