Keeping Students in Class Act has been introduced by Ontario

Keeping Students in Class Act Twitter page of Ric Bresee

Ontario has established a fair and fiscally-responsible four-year collective agreement with Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) education workers across the province by introducing today ‘Keeping Students in Class Act’ that if passed would ensure students remain in the classroom where they belong.

“Students are finally back in class catching up, following two years of pandemic disruptions. We are disappointed that CUPE is refusing to compromise on their demand for a nearly 50 percent increase in compensation, representing a price tag close to $19-billion if extended across the sector…We are delivering on our promise to parents that our government will do whatever it takes to keep students in class, so they can catch up and get back to the basics of learning,” said Stephen Lecce, Minister of Education in a news release.

Unfortunately, CUPE is proceeding with strike action, even after a good-faith attempt by the government to deliver a deal that is fair for workers and good for students the includes:

  • A salary increase of 2.5 percent (increased from an initial offer of 2 percent) for employees with the top end of their salary/wage grids below $43,000 annually (increased from $40,000) and 1.5 percent (increased from 1.25 per cent) for employees with the top end of their salary/wage grids above that amount for each year of the contract;
  • An increase in benefits contributions resulting in a $6,120 annual employer contribution per employee by August 31, 2026;
  • Funding through the Support for Students Fund, estimated to support up to 875 teachers and between 1,600 and 1,830 education workers;
  • Modification to sick leave and short-term disability leave plan provisions that protect stability of student learning, while maintaining generous pension, benefits and sick leave programs;
  • $4.5 million in funding for apprenticeship training; and
  • An extension of modified job security provisions.

To protect against legal challenges, which may create destabilizing uncertainty for students and families, this Act would provide that it shall operate notwithstanding sections 2, 7, and 15 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and despite the Human Rights Code.

#Ontario, #KeepingStudentsinClassAct