cupe strike to affect some local schools but not others
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CUPE Strike to affect some local schools but not others

Avon Maitland Communication Manager, Chera Longston, has some good news for Huron and Perth parents. Longston says the possibility of a strike or withdrawal of services by CUPE members on Friday won’t impact the Avon Maitland Board. 

“So that includes ECE’s in the classroom and custodial staff, some boards have support staff in other groups that are members of CUPE, but not in Avon Maitland. So Friday’s decision for them to go on strike or withdraw services, doesn’t impact our employees,” said Longston. 

“So we’re watching closely and our other Provincial groups, like our elementary teachers and our secondary teachers will be coming up soon for negotiations, so we’ll be watching that closely and we’ll continue to keep families informed,” she added. 

Longston also reminds parents to follow the Avon Maitland board on social media and make sure their email addresses are up to date with school offices because that’s the list they use to reach parents quickly and easily to provide updates.

Meanwhile, The Huron Perth Catholic District School board is advising parents to plan for remote learning on Friday.

“The Huron-Perth Catholic District School Board is preparing contingency plans that hinge on the ability to staff schools in the absence of CUPE workers,” said a release on the board’s website. “Given ongoing staffing shortages, it may not be possible to keep schools open to students on Friday.”

The Bruce Grey Catholic District School Board said in a release that it has a large number of staff that are part of CUPE and they don’t yet know how that will affect classes. The release is advising parents to find alternate childcare for Friday.

“CUPE represents a large number of staff from Bruce-Grey Catholic District School Board,” said a message on the board’s website. “This includes educational assistants, office administrators, library technicians, custodial staff, early childhood educators, IT field technicians and some Catholic Education Centre staff.”

The Upper Grand District School Board will try to keep schools open in the event of a strike by CUPE workers this Friday.

In a release yesterday, officials said they are monitoring the negotiations between the union and the province closely.

CUPE represents maintenance and custodial staff in the UGDSB as well as ESL instructors.

The release said the board highly respects and values CUPE staff and honours the collective bargaining process.

While they say they will try to keep schools open, the release warns that could become very difficult without the unionized staff.

“Despite the efforts of UGDSB management and non-unionized this will become very difficult without our valued CUPE staff,” said the release.

If the strike happens, community use of schools where CUPE represents custodial staff will be cancelled along with all adult ESL classes. Before and After school programs will continue to operate.

When reached by CKNX the Bluewater District School Board said that it has custodian and facility maintenance staff who are members of CUPE but did not say how the job action would affect schools.

Parents are advised to follow the child’s school board on social media and make sure their email addresses are up to date with the board so that receive all strike related communications.

** with files from Kate Stockmann

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