All K-12 school support locals in the province have ratified renewed collective agreements with their respective school districts as of this week. This caps off a very successful round of bargaining that saw significant gains – and no concessions – for the provinces over 40,000 school support workers.
Some of the improvements K-12 school support locals achieved include increased hours for Education Assistants, market adjustments to address recruitment and retention challenges, and other gains utilizing local bargaining table funding.
The successful local bargaining built on the Provincial Framework Agreement, reached with the B.C. Public School Employers’ Association in September 2023. The 3-year PFA gained new commitments for support staff education, a new Provincial Joint Health and Safety Taskforce with a mandate that includes supporting measures to address workplace violence prevention, and $3 million in annual funding for benefit enhancements (more details on these enhancements will be released shortly).
The PFA also included general wage increases and cost of living adjustments. Thanks to unprecedented cooperation and solidarity between public sector unions in B.C., these increases exceed those seen in most other Canadian jurisdictions.
The biggest factor to the success of this round of bargaining sits with the support, involvement, and mobilization of school support members across the province. Members across B.C. stood strong with their union, at the local and provincial levels. Several locals across the province were faced with concession demands by their respective school districts. But members stepped up with mobilization efforts, participating in strike training and kept united fronts across the province.
The K-12 Presidents Council would like to thank all members for their extraordinary support and solidarity during this round of bargaining. The gains we’ve made recognize the crucial role your work means to B.C. students, families, and communities.
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