Teacher representatives from across the province voted on a plan this weekend in the event they need to start job action.
Saying there is no timeline for job action - or even a vote on job action - and that they’re 100 per cent committed to the current mediation process, the BCTF nevertheless has developed a four-phase plan starting with withdrawing administrative tasks to a full-on strike that could be put in place if mediation goes sideways.
“The BCTF Representative Assembly approved a multi-phase contingency plan to help build pressure on the bargaining table that will be put to members for a vote if and when mediation concludes, and the Executive Committee determines there is a need, and that appropriate provincial discussion and consultation has occurred,” BCTF president Teri Mooring said in a letter to teacher across the province.
Phase 1 is public advocacy – wearing “red for BCED,” a petition and general meetings to keep teacher up-to-date.
The second phase would need a strike vote and would be done “if the BCTF executive committee believes additional pressure is required,” the letter explained. It includes withdrawing from administrative duties and only allowing teachers on call to fill in for absent teachers – not other staff from the school.
Phase three would be rotating strikes and phase four would be a full-on strike.
Teachers are asking for a “salary boost” to bring them close to other teachers across the country. The BCTF claims they are the second lowest paid teachers in the country.
“There’s no way we can solve our teacher shortage without shrinking that pay gap,” Mooring said in her letter to teachers.