Abbotsford District Teachers’ Association president Jennifer Brooks presents at a public school board meeting. Dustin Godfrey/Abbotsford News

Abby Schools

Abbotsford teachers enter collective bargaining with district

Seven meetings scheduled between district and union, running April 30 to June 27

The Abbotsford District Teachers’ Association is expected to enter collective bargaining with the school district today.

The Abbotsford School District originally agreed to just three meeting dates, according to a union bulletin posted earlier this month. However, ADTA bargaining chair Doug Smuland recently wrote in a union bargaining update that he is “happy to report that the District has agreed to seven meeting dates” starting on April 30 and running until June 27.

Smuland wrote that he expects the first meeting will largely be to set bargaining objectives between the two parties.

The union, a local of the B.C. Teachers’ Federation, held a general meeting earlier this month to vote on bargaining priorities.

“We are seeking improvements on a number of items which remain important to teachers and are hopeful that the District will see the wisdom of our arguments and agree wholeheartedly,” Smuland wrote.

The BCTF entered collective bargaining with the province in February, with one major bargaining chip being salary improvements.

According to an infographic posted to the BCTF Facebook page, just once province, Quebec, has a lower average minimum wage, while just Newfoundland and Labrador, Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia have lower average maximum wages.

“BC needs to improve teachers’ salaries and offer other recruitment and retention initiatives to ensure our schools and classrooms are properly staffed to support all students,” Smuland wrote in his bargaining update.

The BCTF is also hoping to bargain for improved class size and composition standards for B.C. schools, something that could pose a challenge to school districts if extensive hiring is required to fill gaps.

According to Smuland’s update, there remained 300 unfilled teaching positions throughout the province, something union advocates say could be improved with higher wages to meet the high cost of living in B.C.

ADTA president Jennifer Brooks did not respond to The News’ request for comment.

Find more of our coverage on the Abbotsford School District here.

Report an error or send us your tips, photos and video.

Dustin Godfrey | Reporter

@dustinrgodfrey

Send Dustin an email.
Like the Abbotsford News on Facebook.
Follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Abbotsford Police ‘speed watchers’ are tops in province

Volunteers record highest increase in patrol hours in ICBC challenge

UPDATE: Abbotsford woman reported missing from Chilliwack has been found

Alexis Neill, 26, located safe and sound, police say

Event supports women’s centre that is at risk of having to move

Abbotsford women’s recovery program holds annual Victory Walk

Son of slain former Hells Angel is one of two men sentenced for crime spree

Pair’s 2017 series of robberies included convenience store in Abbotsford

The Offspring and Sum 41 announce show in Abbotsford

Bands play Abbotsford Centre on Nov. 30 as part of Canadian leg of current tour

VIDEO: Could we BE any more excited? ‘Friends’ fans go crazy for merch

Movie theatres will show select episodes to mark the NBC series’ 25th anniversary

Bodies of two missing Surrey men found near Ashcroft

Ryan Provencher and Richard Scurr have been missing since July 17

VIDEO: Organization’s stolen wheelchair van recovered on backroad near Hope

Wheelchair accessible van is only transportation for some people in Hope area

Officials say 50 Oppenheimer Park residents have agreed to leave, as deadline looms

Residents have been told they must be gone by 6 p.m. on Aug. 21

Five hedgehogs quickly adopted after being left at BC SPCA

Lucky new owners picked up their pets from Maple Ridge branch on Aug. 20

B.C. cricket players get interrupted by racist remark

Community has had protocols in place for years to respond to prejudice

Groovy B.C. wedding a throwback to Woodstock ‘69

Couple hosts themed wedding 50 years after legendary festival

‘Do the right thing,’ implores sister of South Surrey stabbing victim

IHIT confirms male arrested in connection with Paul Prestbakmo’s death no longer in custody

Most Read