EDITOR’S NOTE: This just in from the Teacher’s Union. We are now working on getting local reaction.
On November 28th we announced our plan to engage in a work-to-rule job action, beginning on Monday, December 5th .
This action will include classroom teachers, administrators, school psychologists, speech language pathologists, school board consultants, and other NSTU public school members who work for school boards and the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development. During work-to-rule, teachers will focus exclusively on teaching students in a safe learning environment, preparing and implementing lesson plans, and maintaining appropriate contact with parents/guardians of students who are at risk and/or have special needs. Nova Scotia students will continue to receive the best education we can give them.
Teaching and preparing for lessons will continue. This action will demonstrate the scope of activities that teachers do for students that go above and beyond, and those that prevent them from directly teaching students.
Specific things that will be impacted during work-to-rule include: o Teachers will arrive 20 minutes before school and leave 20 minutes after.
Teachers will not engage in the collection of money from students.
Teachers will not perform clerical duties or perform data entry tasks. Attendance will be monitored on paper.
Extra-curricular activities like concerts, team coaching, and clubs will stop during the work-to-rule.
Field trips will not go ahead.
Are teachers still committed to negotiating?
Yes. We’ve never been more committed. But we have been without a contract for 1.5 years and we feel that it is time to take a stand.
How long will work-to-rule last?
We don’t know. As of November 28th, we will start work-to-rule on December 5th. Our hope is that the job action is short (or not happen at all) as we want to get a new collective agreement in place as soon as possible. Collective Bargaining Background The Nova Scotia Teachers Union represents more than 10,000 public school teachers, Community College faculty and professional support staff in Nova Scotia, and teachers who work for the Atlantic Provinces Special Education Authority in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island. On July 31, 2015, the contract for public school members expired, and negotiations have been ongoing. Collective bargaining can be a long and complicated process.
Below is a brief overview of activity.
In early October, the Government of Nova Scotia provided the NSTU with a revised tentative agreement.
This tentative agreement was rejected by the NSTU membership on October 4 because it did not address serious issues that impact the ability of Nova Scotia’s teachers to do their best work for students. It also took from teachers the ability to negotiate a fair and reasonable salary package.
On October 25, Nova Scotia teachers voted for a strong strike mandate. In an electronic strike vote 96% of Public School members (over 10,000 people) voted in favour of strike action.
On November 17, NSTU agreed to go back to bargaining on behalf of the 9,300 public school teachers in the province.
On November 25th, negotiations broke down. It was clear to the NSTU that Government invited was unwilling to negotiate working conditions as part of our collective agreement.
As of November 28th a work-to-rule job action was announced, starting December 5th. A resource about work-to-rule and the impact it will have can be found on http://www.ActForEducation.ca and http://www.NSTU.ca.