Well, the Easter school holiday is over. I always find time flies between now and the end of June. The last week or so has been very busy! Here's a brief follow up on a few stories to watch closely:
The OSSTF deal? Provincial will meet the President's Council on Thursday. The details will either be officially released then or they will be leaking out all over the place very quickly. We will need to wait. I have never seen such a tight union news black out/ lock down before. Stay tuned here.
The ETFO talks? Another very tight news black out! Nothing new yet. It's worth noting these talks are being held separate and apart from the OSSTF deal. Also note OECTA is not party to either of the OSSTF or ETFO talks. ETFO has announced a 2 pm media announcement tomorrow [Wednesday], I suspect after President Sam Hammond meets with the local presidents about the MOE talks.
The OECTA "Me too" clause? Ha. OECTA will have no idea what happens next or whether they will benefit directly, especially if there is no "new money" as Premier Wynne and MOE Liz Sandals have repeatedly insisted. The whole notion of education envelopes is important to consider. Roll that one over in your mind and watch carefully to see what happens!
All Affiliates: Will all the contracts, including those imposed under Bill 115 be reopened, or will the new deal only apply on a go forward basis? The former is messy. The latter would seem to me to require the affiliates be dependent on keeping the OLP or an NDP coalition in government to reap the benefits. How likely do you think it will be that PC Hudak will honour any such agreements for our 2014 contracts? Could the NDP win enough seats to form the next government? So far the polling has been consistent that they cannot. Could teachers still support the OLP?
Don't forget: Whatever the OSSTF + ETFO leadership approves will require member ratification. We await the new deals with bated breath, and wonder what the mood of the membership will be? If the teachers turn down the new agreements, then what next?
ETFO EC OLRB: The hearing this afternoon at 2:30 has been requested by the school boards who are still eager for a ruling. ETFO will argue it is no longer necessary. One wonders what Chair Fishbein will do? It's been some time now since the final hearing on the 2 school boards complaints. Will he entertain the arguments at any great length? Will he just rule the decision mute and end it there? Why is the decision so important to these two small boards?
I will be attending the OLRB being after school. I will do a live blog feed: rough notes with a tidy follow up later. I don't plan on live Twitter coverage, however my hashtag is #skuled13. Nuff said 4 now.
Peter Kormos: The autopsy was on Easter day. We should be learning about the funeral arrangements any time now.The NDP should get a couple of days of news focus. One doubts, with all due respect, that Peter will get the Jack Layton treatment: a downtown funeral possession to a tribute at Massey Hall etc. Of course, expect a big gathering of the party faithful. A virtual NDP who's who all in one place.
It will be interesting to see how the Peter Kormos story will be spun. He will be loved by the party, with whom he also had a big falling out, during the Rae government. Some will white wash the early 1990 NDP government by blaming all its woes on Premier Bob Rae, if it comes up. Others will argue the problem wasn't with Rae but with the party. Memories are pretty short, and the party definitely needs all the political capital + good will it can get, especially right now as we face a possible spring election.
IMHO: Peter was a true peoples' fighter. I think he deserves a great street party without all the official hoopla. I liked Jack's outside Massey Hall. It's still so darn cold though ....
PS: I stand corrected. As one Welland reader has commented, Peter was from there and of course that is where his ceremonies should be. I warned you all I'm from Toronto and we think we own the province, even though we don't. My apologies.