Growing Opposition to Anti-Social Offensive in Ontario

Oppose Attempt to Blame Teachers for Problems of Education System

Actions of teachers and education workers, parents and entire families continue to grow in Ontario to express their opposition to the direction the Ford government is taking in Ontario of cuts to public education and of privatization in particular.

At this point, all teachers in the publicly funded K-12 education system in all boards are engaged in various levels of strikes and work-to-rule actions to express their No! On February 13, the province's French as a first language teachers in both the public and Catholic French systems, organized into the Association des enseignantes et enseignants franco-ontariens (AEFO) will carry out a one day province-wide strike. They are joined by a number of districts of the Ontario Secondary School Teachers' Federation (OSSTF) and the Elementary Teachers' Federation (ETFO). ETFO is now holding one province-wide strike action and one rotating strike action each week, meaning all their members are on full strike two days per week. On Friday, February 21, all four teachers' unions -- the Ontario English Catholic Teachers' Association (OECTA), ETFO, OSSTF and AEFO -- will hold a one-day strike.

Instead of heeding the opposition, the Ford government is now attempting to incite the public against education workers by claiming that seniority in hiring decisions of new teachers harms quality teaching while arbitrariness and nepotism in hiring would somehow improve the system. Like its other attempts, it is clear that the Ford government is intent on painting the organization of education workers into unions, which can defend their rights, as the problem in education, rather than the reality which is that it is a main factor for the defence of the quality of education. It shows that one of the main fights at this time is over the right of those who provide public services to have a say over their wages and working conditions and the services which they provide. For the Ford government, it is the ruling elite who should make all the decisions while the workers should just be subject to the whims of those whose job is to implement an anti-social direction for public services. It is on this point that the Ford government has not been able to convince anyone, as the general public is clear that those who provide the services are the ones who stand for their improvement.

Photos of February 3-11 Actions

Ottawa Catholic School Board

Durham District School Board

Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board

Toronto District School Board

Toronto Catholic School Board

Peel District School Board

Niagara District School Board

Greater Essex County District School Board

Lakehead District School Board

(Photos: F. Hahn, M. Hardy, OSSTF Dist 12, OECTA, R. Reid, J. Thom, TECT, M. Bartlett, L. Kaur, A. Perrier, M. Spagnuola, Sparling)

This article was published in

Number 5 - February 12, 2020

Article Link:
Growing Opposition to Anti-Social Offensive in Ontario: Oppose Attempt to Blame Teachers for Problems of Education System


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