MEDIA ADVISORY – On Wednesday, December 4, 10AM – 2PM, OSSTF Toronto to hold pickets at TDSB high schools as well as TDSB Board offices at 5050 Yonge, 140 Borough Drive, 1 Civic Centre Court, and the offices of OPSBA and Doug Ford.
(TORONTO, Dec 3, 2019) Should there be no negotiated settlement as of the strike deadline, OSSTF Toronto’s 7000 teachers, occasional teachers and professional student support personnel will be off the job on Wednesday, December 4. Between 10AM and 2PM our Members will walk the picket line in front of TDSB high schools, the offices of the Ontario Public School Boards Association and Doug Ford, as well as at the TDSB central offices.
Leslie Wolfe, President of OSSTF Toronto said, “It’s not easy for anyone to walk away from their students, even for a day. Before Doug Ford’s cuts to education funding, there were already too many students in classrooms. Now there’s even more, leaving less time for teachers to give to each student.
“Literally hundreds of classes and programs disappeared from Toronto’s high schools this year because the teachers aren’t there to teach them. At the proposed class size average of 25:, thousands more will disappear.
“One hundred and twenty Toronto high school teachers who had full time jobs last year, still remain completely unemployed or only partially employed.
“We have adult students sitting in classes of 40 or more, and Adult Day School Teachers struggling to help some of the most vulnerable adults in Toronto.
“Given the chaos Premier Ford’s cuts have already caused in schools, and the continued insistence of his Education Minister Steven Lecce that it is reasonable to want to cut a total $1B from our kids’ education, and after 8 months of trying to protect students and schools through bargaining, walking off the job for one day is a fairly measured response. What we want is a negotiated settlement that protects students and schools, and is fair to the workers who are the heart of Ontario’s high quality, public education system.”
Kimberly Perry, President of the Professional Student Services Personnel said, “Professional Student Services are an integral part of our schools. These workers help maintain equitable access to the school experience as they support some of the most vulnerable young people in our system. Cuts that have reduced access to our psychologists, CYW’s or Social Workers put students at risk. Removing additional professional educational supports is simply unconscionable.”
“Occasional Teachers are in and out of schools on a daily basis and have seen across the TDSB how each school has been impacted by Doug Ford’s cuts,” said Linda Bartram, President of the Toronto Occasional Teachers Bargaining Unit. “Occasional Teachers care about the students and what will happen if the agenda of cuts, and more cuts, is allowed to proceed.”
OSSTF Toronto Teachers’ President Leslie Wolfe, Occasional Teachers’ President Linda Bartram and PSSP President Kimberley Perry will be available to speak to members of the media at the Yonge Street entrance to the TDSB at 5050 Yonge beginning at 9:30AM, December 4.
OSSTF Toronto Teachers Bargaining Unit represents secondary school teachers in high schools, adult day schools, alternative schools and programs, centrally assigned positions, summer, and night schools in the TDSB.