Wednesday, May 27, 2015

The Latest!

Be a Part of the Rally for Education
ETFO Members have a perfect opportunity to tell the Liberal Government what we think of their approach to collective bargaining June 6th at the Liberal Annual General Meeting at the Blue Mountain Resort in Collingwood.  Our Occasional Teacher Local along with the ETFO Thames Valley Teacher Local will provide transportation for members to participate in the Rally for Education. Join us on Saturday, June 6 and help send the Liberals a message they can't ignore!

Transportation Information
  • Buses will depart promptly from the Thames Valley Permanent Teacher Local office (2911 Bateman Trail) on Saturday, June 6 at 8:00 a.m. sharp (Please arrive 15 minutes before departure time).
  • Parking is available at the Local office and car pooling is recommended.
  • Buses will stop at the Woodstock Quality Inn at 8:30 a.m. to pick up ETFO members in the eastern portion of the Local.
  • Please register to reserve a seat on the bus before 12:00 noon on Wednesday, June 3 by registering on-line (
  • Members are advised to bring a bag lunch.
The Rally for Education begins at 12:00 noon at the Blue Mountain Resort in Collingwood.  We plan to be back in the district around dinnertime on Saturday.

Local Executive 2015 - 2016
Members elected the following ETFO Thames Valley Occasional Teachers at the Spring General Meeting held on May 21, 2015 at the Lamplighter Inn:
President/Chief Negotiator - Terry Card
First Vice-President - Vivek Nath
Second Vice-President - Nancy Springer
Treasurer - Kevin Utley
Secretary - Gina Droppo
Health and Safety Officer - Nicole Henderson
Executives at Large - Sheri-Lynn Honyust, Meera Jain, Sarah Pye, Tammy Tourlas

Summer Academy 2015 'Don't Miss Out' ...
Summer Academy 2015 is coming soon! Please visit the ETFO website for full details of this summer's exciting lineup of courses.  There are 40 three-day professional learning courses offered in partnership between locals and the provincial office throughout July and August.

The summer Academy registration site includes course descriptions and information about dates, times, and locations across the province.  Be sure to check it out and choose a course or two for you. Don't wait or you may miss out as courses fill up very quickly!

For more information, please visit the ETFO website, view this flyer (PDF|RTF) or contact Ruth Dawson, extension 2278,, at the provincial office.

Just a reminder to complete your WHMIS Review/Offence Declaration/IT policy, mandatory online training modules and designated online Paid PD opportunities before June 26, 2015.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Cancellation of EQAO testing

The fact that EQAO testing has been cancelled this spring indicates that ETFO's work-to-rule strike action is putting pressure on the government and OPSBA.

The cancellation of EQAO tests in public elementary schools this spring will allow students to focus on more in-depth learning and teachers to use their professional judgment to provide more accurate student assessments.

The ETFO work-to rule will continue until the government and the Ontario Public School Board Association (OPSBA) take the offensive concessions off the table.

Teachers'/OT Prep Time and Central Bargaining
As you are aware, part of the stalemate as ETFO sits at the central bargaining table is over the effort by the Government and by OPSBA to micro-manage Teachers' and Occasional Teachers' preparation time. Ontario ETFO members are now sharing on Twitter the many things they use their prep time for as they accommodate the needs of their students. Check out the many tweets under #MyPrepTime and #4MyStudents to see how your peers are responding to this challenge - we encourage TVOT members to share their own stories.

At a May 8th press conference, ETFO members Laurie Menard and Abayomi Aruso discussed the importance of teachers having self-directed preparation time to meet the individual needs of students. You can view their video at

Book Rebate Deadline - fast approaching
Book Rebate requests must be received at the ETFO- TVOT office by May 31st!
Download the form at in Member Services under Useful Forms/Documents.

Mandatory Modules = .5 day of pay and Online PD options = 3.5 days of pay
The following mandatory training modules must be completed on or before 2015 June 26 (with payment on 2015 July 10) for you to remain active on the elementary OT list for September 2015. Please ensure you are using Internet Explorer to view your mandatory training.  If you are using an alternate browser (i.e Google Chrome, Safari, etc.) then you may run into a compatibility issue.  If you are using the newest version of Internet Explorer you may have to add TVDSB as a compatible website to your computer using the instructions attached.

To access the training modules, please log into your portal. Under staff Development and Training there is a title "Mandatory Training".  Please click on "Mandatory Training" and all the modules listed below will be available to you. Instructions for confirming you've completed the modules are attached.  Please ensure confirmation of your training once you have completed it.

In addition to the noted mandatory training modules, all occasional teachers must complete the annual WHMIS Review and Office Declaration and ITS Security. Links to these modules can be found through the portal under personal information. Click on the link and you will be directed to the training requirements.

  • Module 2 - Handling a Violent Situation
  • Module 3 - Post Incident Review and Documentation
  • Module 4 - Safe Schools and Employee Roles
  • Module 5 - Harassment
  • Module 6 - Work Refusals
  • Module 7 - Management of Aggressive Behaviour
  • Module 10 - Working Late
  • Module 12 - Workplace Design
  • Module 13 - Recognizing and Coping with AB in a School Setting
  • Mental Health Safety Spotlight
  • Mental Health extra video: I had a black dog; his name is depression video
  • Concussion
  • Anaphylaxis (based on Sabrina's Law)


Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Occasional Teachers and the ETFO Work to Rule - Phase 1

As of May 11th, ETFO is legally on strike - any withdrawal of services on the part of union members who are in a legal strike position is strike action.

Struck Work:
Most Administrators respect our right to strike but should you be requested to perform struck work, remind your Principal/Vice-Principal that we are on a legal strike and cannot do what has been requested.  If you don't feel comfortable having this type of conversation or if you feel threatened, please contact us immediately.  Bulletin #18 provided members with a detailed list of struck work, however if you have any questions, please call the Local.

Cancelled Jobs:
As expected, daily Occasional Teachers have had many of their pre-booked assignments cancelled in response to Phase 1 of ETFO's Work to Rule.  The Collective Agreement allows for cancellation of jobs if there is 2 hours notice prior to the start of the job.  Should an assignment be cancelled without 2 hours advance notice, please inform the Local with the TVARRIS job number and details so that we can seek payment from Human Resources.

LTO Communications:
Occasional Teachers in LTO assignments should not send anything home with students about our strike actions nor distributing school communications that involve labour/negotiations/Work To Rule issues.  Nor will we discuss the protocol with Administrators - this is the Board's responsibility.  LTOs will continue to distribute regular school communications (monthly newsletters, etc.) to parents.

Some areas not affected for Occasional Teachers and the ETFO Work to Rule:

  • any work in the separate school system
  • mandatory online training
  • three half days of professional development available on Employee Portal>Conference registration
  • NTIP
  • LTO Evaluations

Don't forget to register for our upcoming Spring General Meeting and Elections taking place on Thursday, May 21st, 2015 at the Best Western Lamplighter Inn from 4:30 PM - 7:30 PM.  To register got to . Dinner is included for all ETFO - TVOT members.

Also, the deadline to apply for the 2014-2015 Book Rebate Program is fast approaching. Book Rebate Forms are found on the website under "Useful Documents and Forms" under "Member Services".  The $40 Book Rebate Form must be received by May 31st.

The CLC's "Time for a Change" Tour
The Canadian Labour Congress along with the Ontario Federation of Labour believe that workers and their community allies can make a better choice and win a new federal government that will put good jobs and affordable child care first - a new government that will invest in health care and will fix retirement security.

Join us for a short and fun evening at the Marconi Club, 120 Clarke Road in London on Thursday, June 18th from 7 PM - 9 PM.  It will be a great opportunity to meet fellow labour activists and pick up materials to help reach out to members in your workplace.

To find out more go to

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

IMPORTANT MEETING: What is Really Protecting You?, Book Rebate Deadline and Spring General Meeting

What is Really Protecting You?

Did you know that Teachers and Occasional Teachers are exempted from many of the provisions of the Employment Standards Act?  ETFO reminds you that your Collective Agreement protects you even when the law does not!

As the Ministry of Labour link below highlights -
  • We are not entitled to the minimum wage
  • We are not entitled to breaks
  • We are not entitled to a lunch period
  • We are not entitled to public holidays
  • We are not entitled to limits on hours of work
  • We are not entitled to the same personal leaves as other workers.
It is our Collective Agreement which ensures that we are treated as professionals.
Find out how to support ETFO at the central bargaining table.  Attend the information meeting at the Best Western Lamplighter Inn on Thursday, May 7 from 4:30 PM - 6 PM.
Ministry of Labour link -

REMINDER:   Those wishing to submit a claim for the $40 Book Rebate offered by your Local, please be advised the form must be received by May 31st, 2015.
Forms can be found at website under Member Services:  Useful Documents

Spring General Meeting and Elections
Registration is open for our Spring General Meeting and Elections taking place on Thursday, May 21, 2015 from 4:30 PM - 7:30 PM at the Best Western Lamplighter Inn, 591 Wellington Road, London, N6C 4R3.  A lovely dinner is included for ETFO - TVOT members.  As well, a bargaining update will be provided at that meeting.  Please go to to register under "Member Services"