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Sask. teachers stage second one-day strike, province 'disappointed' with latest job action


Teachers in Saskatchewan are back on the picket lines Monday as part of a second one-day walk off within a week.

The goal is to get the government to the bargaining table to discuss classroom size and complexities.

Something the province has said it strongly feels does not belong at the bargaining table and an issue it says has been addressed with increased funding and new program announcements and pilot projects.

An independent conciliator's report said the two topics are something that could be discussed at the bargaining table.

“If they continue to flat-out refuse to bargain on class size and complexity, which are the learning conditions for Saskatchewan’s students, we will have no choice but to continue to exercise the only options we have left to bring them back into discussions,” STF president Samantha Becotte said in a release on Monday.

Teachers are seen picketing in Saskatoon on Monday in one of at least 35 "demonstration sites" across the province. (ChadHills/CTVNews)

Education Minister Jeremy Cockrill said that discussing classroom size and complexities at the bargaining table is a “line in the sand for the government that we’re not going to be moving on.”

"We again believe classroom size, complexity are best dealt with by school divisions, locally led school divisions, 27 of them all around the province in a diverse range of communities, size and demographics," Cockrill said.

There are over 35 “demonstration sites” set up across the province on Monday where teachers will be picketing, according to a news release from the Saskatchewan Teachers’ Federation (STF) on Friday.

According to the STF, over 18,000 emails and phone calls have been sent to Education Minister Jeremy Cockrill and Premier Scott Moe.

“Support and solidarity for teachers has poured in from across the country,” the STF said.

Province disappointed to see more job action

In an email sent to CTV News, the Ministry of Education said it was disappointed with the STF’s most recent announcement on job action.

“The Government-Trustee Bargaining Committee (GTBC) has put forward a fair deal for teachers with a 7 per cent raise over three years, ensuring Saskatchewan teachers remain paid above the Western Canadian Average. The GTBC remains at the table, ready to discuss competitive salary and benefits but cannot negotiate without the STF at the table as well,” the email read.

The province also reiterated that outside of the collective bargaining process it is “actively working to address concerns around classroom size and complexity.”

“And we are doing exactly what we said we would with a $53.1 million investment towards enrolment and complexity, a teacher-led innovation and support fund, and specialized support classroom pilot projects,” the province added.

Teachers last walked off the job on Jan. 16, Monday’s job action was announced the following day.

STF president Samantha Becotte joined several picket lines in Saskatoon, the STF's release said.

The province and teachers have been at an impasse since October after initial bargaining talks started in May 2023.

Teachers’ last contract expired in August 2023. Top Stories

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