REGINA -- The Saskatchewan Teachers’ Bargaining Committee has reached a tentative agreement with the province.

The province announced the agreement on Wednesday.

According to the Ministry of Education, the Saskatchewan Teachers’ Federation will now take the contract to its members for a vote.

“This tentative agreement balances our respect and appreciation for teachers with the fiscal realities of the province,” Deputy Premier and Education Minister Gordon Wyant said in a news release. “The terms of our offer mean that Saskatchewan teachers will have stability for years to come and be paid at five per cent above the Western Canadian Average.”

The STF confirmed in a release that its bargaining committee had reached terms of settlement with the government.

Although the settlement does not address all of its concerns surrounding class size and composition, the STF said it was necessary to vote on the proposal due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Our withdrawal of these issues from this round of bargaining in no way signals resolution or reduced importance of these issues,” said Maze. “Systematic changes take time and are often made incrementally. I believe we have advanced this issue significantly, and the Federation is unwavering in its dedication to address class complexity and ensure an adequately funded public education system in Saskatchewan.”

STF President Patrick Maze said classroom composition will be handled away from the bargaining table through a restructured committee including educators and deans of both education colleges in the province.

The four-year agreement includes a two per cent salary increase in the second, third and fourth years of the contract.

If ratified, the STF said the agreement would be effective from September 1, 2019 to August 31, 2023.

Members of the STF ended voluntary extracurricular activities on March 12 and suspended those sanctions on March 27.

Schools in the province closed on March 20 and many schools moved to online learning.