Parkland teachers vote for strike action

2006 10 20

Teachers employed by Parkland School Division have voted 87 per cent in favour of taking strike action if a collective agreement for the 2006/07 school year cannot be concluded with trustees. The government-supervised strike vote was conducted in Parkland schools yesterday.

The president of Parkland Teachers’ Local of the Alberta Teachers’ Association, Robert Twerdoclib, expressed dismay that the actions of school trustees have forced teachers to step closer to strike action. He said that, in a mediation meeting held October 18, only one item seemed to be a sticking point.

“We are literally $2,000 away from a settlement,” Twerdoclib said, explaining that the board is refusing to provide funding for health spending accounts for four teachers who work less than half time. “In our view, it is a matter of fairness and justice that all teaching staff of this jurisdiction has access to proper medical coverage. It was because of this paltry amount that trustees at Wednesday’s meeting put on their coats and walked away.”

“I strongly believe the trustees feel they need to be seen as the ‘winners’ in bargaining for this year’s collective agreement,” Twerdoclib said. “It is unfortunate they have decided they can achieve this objective by minimizing health coverage for four of our part-time teachers.”

Teachers employed by Parkland School Division No 70 provide educational services to more than 9,500 students in schools located between Entwistle and Spruce Grove.

For more information, please contact Robert Twerdoclib at (780) 963-5898.