Ontario Secondary School Teachers' Federation
District 13 Durham

President's Memo

President's Memo

Past memos can be viewed as a pdf by opening the attachments below.

Welcome Back: We wish for a great school year ahead and remind members that we are here to help with any issue you have related to work. Don’t hesitate to get in contact with us via phone or email. You can reach each District Representative and President via email:

District and Teacher Bargaining Unit President: shane.stagg@d13.osstf.ca
Negotiator/Benefits Representative: nicole.bleau@d13.osstf.ca
Health and Safety/Staffing Representative: richard.mcormack@d13.osstf.ca
Anti-oppression and Social Justice Representative: garrett.metcalfe@d13.osstf.ca
Occasional Teacher Bargaining Unit President: julia.mccrea@d13.osstf.ca
Professional Student Services Personnel President: stephanie.pritchard @d13.osstf.ca
Office Manager: ruth.leone@d13.osstf.ca
Office phone: 905 668 7100

Email List – please encourage members not yet on our mailing list to send an email to richard.mccormack@d13.osstf.ca with a NON-DDSB email address and we will add them to our email list to receive important news and updates.

Our website address is www.d13.osstf.ca – There you can find forms, constitutions, contracts, dates for committee meetings, instructions on the abilities form and much more. Under the menu item Flip Chart, you will find answers to the most frequently asked questions from our members on topics such as Social Media, Injured at Work, Teacher Performance Appraisal, Certification, College of Teachers and CAS, Professional Judgement, Incident Reporting, Harassment at Work, Sick Days, OTIP and Leave Days.

You can also find us on social media: Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook by searching for District 13 OSSTF.

OCT Qualifications in ApplytoEducation Profile: In order for OCT qualification to be included in your ApplytoEducation profile, members must add their OCT number. This can be checked by logging into ApplytoEducation and choosing Portfolio and Qualifications from the menu at the top.

Unpaid Leaves of Absence Being Denied: Is has been observed over the last year that member requests to the Board for unpaid leaves of absence are being denied. This is particularly in cases of vacation trips. In discussion with the employer they describe a point of view that discretionary trips should be scheduled outside of the school year. They maintain that consideration is being given to special events but we have been seeing evidence to the contrary.

We have encouraged the Board to communicate to staff what can be expected when requesting an unpaid leave to avoid disappointment and potential costs to employees who may make arrangements under the assumption that their leave request will be approved. In the absence of that messaging from the employer we are offering a heads-up to members that any request for an unpaid leave should be made before committing to any travel plans. We disagree with the Board’s handling of these unpaid leave requests which represents a change from past practice.

DDSB Safe and Respectful Workplace Policy: As we begin to see the Board’s implementation of its Safe and Respectful Workplace and Harassment Prevention Policy, it is important that members are aware of how the employer is applying this policy. When investigating interactions involving students or colleagues that are not related to an educational context, the response of the employer has been along the disciplinary route. District 13 believes that in all circumstances there should be opportunity for members to be able to learn to do better without having discipline attached to the process but this is not what we have been seeing. We will continue to work with the Board to influence how it handles situations. Members involved in any issue have the support of District 13 throughout.

Members are advised to be aware of the Safe and Respectful Workplace and Harassment Prevention policy and to ask questions if they are unsure of how it may apply to them. Please be mindful of all interactions with students and colleagues and recognize that there are high expectations for professional behaviour. There is an evolving understanding of how behaviour can impact others and things that may not have been addressed in the past are now drawing the attention of supervisors and the employer.

While District 13 may not always agree with the Board’s handling of each situation we are fully in support of all members of the school community having a safe working and learning environment. We are committed to furthering our collective understanding of anti-oppression and anti-racism.

Collective Agreement Language and Consideration for Job Postings: Article L4.02(c) of the TBU Collective Agreement states the following:

For any internal/external posting, where the internal applicants’ Certificates of Qualification match a job posting, all such internal applicants will be interviewed before external applicants are interviewed. If a short list is created from among these internal applicants, then an internal applicant will be hired.

What this means is that any permanent teacher or eligible Adult Day School applicant to a permanent job posting with the required qualifications can expect to be granted an interview for the position. If you are a permanent or Adult Day School teacher that applies to a position for which you have the qualifications and you are not contacted for an interview please contact the District Office for assistance.

The short listing language above means that a hiring principal can choose to interview fewer than all qualified internal candidates but must then offer the position to an internal applicant. A hiring principal cannot interview a short list of internal candidates and then interview and hire an external candidate.

For clarity: an internal candidate is a current full or part-time permanent teacher, or eligible Adult Day School teacher.

OTIP: Members are reminded that if they have had any life changes such as a new child, a new spouse, etc. that they have a 31 day window of opportunity to add them to their benefits. Once the window closes, you can only make changes upon your next life change

Related Attachments