School boards attempt to block teachers’ unique strike plan

By Matthew McCully
School boards attempt to block teachers’ unique strike plan

School boards and service centres across the province have filed an interlocutory and permanent injunction with the supreme court to prevent teachers from following through with a strike intended to take place on the morning of April 14 from the start of school until 9:30 a.m.
“I honestly believe the school boards just don’t know what to do,” commented Quebec Provincial Association of Teachers (QPAT) President Heidi Yetman in a phone interview.
The plan is not your average strike, Yetman explained, the tactic has yet to be used in the province. Teachers would in theory begin their strike at midnight and end at 9:30 a.m. on April 14, only disrupting the first 90 minutes of the school day.
Teachers would be docked two hours of pay rather than a full day, and students would still get to go to school, Yetman said.
“It’s a shame, really. We thought we were being innovative,” the union president said, “at the same time, students are still going to school that day. It’s an interesting idea, I don’t think it’s ever happened in education,” she said.
According to Yetman, the nine English school boards and 34 French service centres that filed the interlocutory injunction have no problem with unions striking for a full day. They’re claiming the strike from midnight to 9:30 a.m. would be too difficult to manage, she said.

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