National News

B.C. teachers' pay to be cut Monday: employer

By The Canadian Press

VANCOUVER - The group representing B.C.'s 60 public-school boards at the bargaining table with teachers says promised wage cuts will take effect Monday, the same day rotating strikes are set to begin around the province.

The BC Public School Employers' Association says in a letter to the teachers' union that a five-per-cent wage reduction will jump to 10-per-cent on the first day the teachers' walkout affects any schools.

It also says the employer will lock out secondary school teachers June 25 and 26 and all teachers June 27.

The BC Teachers' Federation has tweeted that it will respond to the developments on Thursday morning.

Union members voted 89 per cent in favour of striking in March, and teachers stopped supervising students outside the classroom or communicating in writing to administrators during the first phase of job action.

Both sides remain firmly divided over wages, class size, the composition of those classes and the length of the contract term.

"To date BCTF has given no indication it will be making a significant change in its position which would be expected in collective bargaining and is very disappointing," writes Michael Marchbank, the association's public administrator.

"BCPSEA wants to achieve a negotiated settlement before the end of this school year in order to provide stability for students, parents and teachers."

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