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OECTA Secondary School Teachers Ratify Agreement with Sudbury Catholic Board

October 24, 2002 - The Sudbury Secondary Unit of the Ontario English Catholic Teachers Association (OECTA) and the Sudbury Catholic District School Board have ratified a new two year collective agreement effective September 2002 to August 2004. The new agreement includes adjustments to benefits and wage increases of 1.2 percent effective September 2002, an additional 1 percent in February 2003 and September 2003 and 1.5 percent in February of 2004. The agreement ensures that the stable and co-operative work environment will continue at the Boards four Catholic secondary schools and the St. Albert Adult Learning Centre.

Given the current political and financial milieu that exists between school boards in Ontario and the government, it is a major coup that both parties were able to come to an agreement despite the shortcomings of the provincial funding formula. Both the Board and the OECTA bargaining committee decided not to wait until the government completed its review of the funding model to embark upon the task of working together to reach a contract settlement. The Board approved the agreement last week and the teachers accepted the new contract by voting 82 percent in favour of ratification.

Dan Charbonneau, OECTA President stated that "when both parties began negotiations in early June, there was a willingness on both sides to come to an agreement without having to resort to work interruptions, a strike or lockout and/or arbitration. With this recent agreement, our secondary students can be assured that there will be no labour interruptions in the education sector."

Jody Cameron, Chair of the Sudbury Catholic School Board is pleased with the fact that the contract has been ratified by the membership, stating that, "the fact that the OECTA membership ratified the agreement by such a large majority is extremely encouraging. Both parties during negotiations were looking to ensure that the interests of students were at the forefront of our discussions. With labour peace, our students transition to post secondary because of the double cohort will happen seamlessly."



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