Teachers offered new deal to avert job action - Metro US

Teachers offered new deal to avert job action

Education Minister Kathleen Wynne is putting a new offer on the table in a last-ditch effort to avert job action by elementary public school teachers.

Wynne met with union and school board officials today to present the revised offer as the clock counts down to a crucial deadline.

The Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario has threatened to hold a strike vote if “significant progress” isn’t made in contract talks with school boards by Friday.

The union had failed to reach a deal with the province despite 11th-hour talks that broke off in December.

The province had offered an $800-million deal that would have given teachers a 12 per cent pay raise over four years.

But that was trimmed to four per cent over two years — about $268 million — when no agreement was reached despite having extended the deadline to Dec. 5.

Wynne insisted for weeks the money behind the sweetened deal was gone because the province’s troubled economy was worsening.

The union maintains the main issue for teachers is not salaries, but a $711-per-student funding gap between elementary and high schools in Ontario.

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