Striking teachers vote

For the next 3 days, 12 000 Ontario college faculty and staff will vote online whether to accept or reject the college employer council’s latest contract offer. A member of the union’s bargaining committee says that while the group plans to reject the offer, some of the outstanding issues are easy to resolve.

Last Monday’s contract offer by the colleges includes enhanced job security for part timers, benefits and a provincial task force that’ll look into staffing and funding.

“This offer isn’t everything we agreed to otherwise we would’ve had a deal.” Kevin Mackay, a professor and member of the union’s bargaining team, says that the newest contract also has restrictions on hiring full-time staff but most importantly, the new deal still keeps the curriculum out of the teacher’s hands.

“I could have a manager, who has no background in my field of experience and they can tell me what books to use, they can tell me what evaluations to use for my students. We’re teaching paramedics at different colleges, we’re teaching airline pilots, this is serious business. The faculty should be the ones determining the academic standards in those areas.”

Mackay says switching that responsibility to the teachers wouldn’t cost colleges a dime.

We were unable to get any comment from the college employer council regarding the expected rejection of their latest offer. The official outcome is set to be released Thursday night.


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