PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE – June 2017
As the 2016-2017 school year draws to a close, I would like to extend a sincere thank you to each SCETF Member for their ongoing dedication to the students in their care and to our profession. Each day you make the difference in the life of a child.
ETFO 2017-2019 Teacher/ Occasional Teacher Extension Agreement: The contract extension was approved in early March, 2017. The Extension Agreement will be in effect from September 1st, 2017 to August 31st, 2019.
a) Compensation: Effective September 1st, 2017, there will be a 1.5% adjustment to the salary grid and position of responsibility allowances. By November 1st, 2017, a lump sum payment of 0.5% of wages earned in 2016-2017 will be paid to those teachers who are employed or on an approved leave, paid sick leave or statutory leave as at September 1st, 2017.
b) Individual Education Plans (IEPs): IEPs will need to be updated or created within the first 30 instructional days of the school year, and this shall serve as the IEP update and distribution for the progress report card.
c) Special Education System Investment: Approximately $1.016 million will be invested in special education staffing in the SCDSB. This will result in a minimum of 8 FTE positions.
d) Priorities Fund System Investment: Approximately $500 000 will be invested in early years special education needs support, and/or, support for English language learners in the SCDSB. This will result in approximately 5 FTE positions.
e) Kindergarten: Effective 2017-2018 school year, the class size for all FDK classes will be capped at 30. For 2018-2019, the cap be will 29 students.
f) Grade 4 – 8: The class size average will be reduced to 24.5.
Bill 115 Remedy: It was announced on June 15th, 2017, that ETFO will return to the Ontario Superior Court of Justice to seek a fair remedy for losses incurred by its members due to the imposition of the Ontario government’s Putting Students First Act (Bill 115) in September 2012, as well as for the violation of their rights under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
In a landmark Court decision in April 2016, Justice Thomas Lederer found that the government violated the Charter rights of education sector unions when it imposed Bill 115. Justice Lederer did not set out a remedy in the decision, leaving it to the parties to determine. It was understood that if they could not agree on a remedy, then the matter would be referred back to the Court. Updates on the Bill 115 Remedy will be provided through the ETFO CB eNewsletter.
ETFO ELHT (Employee Life and Health Trust): SCETF Members have been part of the ETFO ELHT for almost eight months starting on November 1st, 2016. If you have any questions about the new plan, please contact OTIP for assistance at 1-866-783-6847. As well, ETFO Staff at the Provincial Office are available to assist ETFO Members. Please call 1-888-838-3836 and ask for the Duty Officer – Benefits. For more info on the ETFO ELHT, go to the ETFO website at: http://www.etfo.ca/benefits/pages/default.aspx.
September 2017 Refresh of Sick Leave: As a result of this ruling from the December 2016, “refresh of sick leave” arbitration, the September 2017, Refresh of Sick Leave may look different for some SCETF Members. SCETF Members who are off work due to medical reasons either full-time or part-time at the end of June 2017, and are unable to resume full-time duties in September 2017, due to the same medical reasons are encouraged to contact the SCETF Office in August/September 2017, to obtain information on how they will access sick leave/short term disability days in 2017-2018.
I want to extend a sincere thank you to all SCETF Members for their ongoing support as I serve you in the role as President. I look forward to working on your behalf for the next two years. I wish everyone a relaxing and enjoyable summer! Be sure to take time for family, friends and yourself.