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CUPE Labour Update

03 Oct

Dear Parents/Guardians,

As you are aware, the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) announced that its members will take further job action on Monday, October 7, 2019, if a new collective agreement is not reached through negotiations with the province and the Council of Trustees Associations. The new job action will be a full withdrawal of services, which is otherwise known as a strike or a walk-out. Over 18,000 employees will not be at work for the duration of the strike, which is almost half of the Toronto District School Board’s employees. Most of these employees work in schools.

If this job action commences as scheduled, the Board will close all schools for all students on Monday, October 7, 2019 and for the duration of the job action. While we understand that this is a challenging time, parents will be required to make alternate arrangements for their children. This is not a decision that we made lightly and we have explored every possible contingency plan to keep schools open. Student supervision and safety are our top priorities and without the important services of these school-based employees, we cannot guarantee that our learning environments will remain safe and clean for all students.

Employees, who are members of CUPE, provide critical daily services, including (but not limited to):

  • building and school ground safety and security;
  • lunch room supervision;
  • educational support in full-day kindergarten classrooms;
  • supervision and support for students with special needs;
  • safe water checks;
  • washroom and water fountain cleaning;
  • heating system operations; and
  • safe arrival programs.

During this job action, all non-CUPE employees will continue to report to work in schools and administrative centres.

In addition to the closure of schools for students, the following programs and services will also be impacted should the strike action commence on Monday:

Third-Party Licensed Child Care Operators in TDSB Schools

During the full strike action when schools are closed to students, third-party child care operators located in TDSB schools will be permitted to remain open. However, operating hours have been adjusted to 8 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. It’s important to note that the decision to open or close will be made by individual child care operators. Please contact your child care operator directly to confirm and for more information.

Most of the services provided by licensed child care operators are not directly impacted by the CUPE strike. However, some TDSB CUPE employees have responsibilities related to the opening and closing of these child care facilities. With limited management staff to fill in these roles, we are doing our best to keep these child care operations open, but with limited operating hours.

TDSB Extended Day Programs

During the full strike action when schools are closed to students, TDSB-operated Extended Day Programs will also be closed to all families. This child care service is operated by CUPE employees. Parents/guardians will be refunded for any closure during the labour disruption. See the full list of TDSB-operated Extended Day Programs.

Permits

During the full strike action, all school permits are cancelled, including authorized recreation programs.

Continuing Education

During the full strike action, all continuing education classes are cancelled. This includes Adult ESLAdult High SchoolsCredit ProgramsCommunity Programs/Learn4Life, and International Languages Elementary/African Heritage.

Meetings

The following meetings will be cancelled during the full strike action: school council meetings, advisory committee meetings and ward forums.

While the TDSB is not directly involved in the provincial negotiations, the Board remains hopeful that a new agreement will be reached before Monday, October 7, 2019. If an agreement is reached, schools will open as usual on Monday.

We are committed to providing an update to all parents/guardians over the weekend.

For ongoing updates and the latest information, please continue to check www.tdsb.on.ca/labour and follow @tdsb on Twitter.

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