The government’s second set of offers push school support staff back 20 years

21 April 2023

Nego 2023 – Francophone and Anglophone Educational Organizations

The employer negotiating committees for the Francophone school service centers and for the Anglophone school boards have submitted a second set of offers to the Fédération du personnel de soutien scolaire (FPSS‑CSQ). FPSS-CSQ President Éric Pronovost says “the second set of offers is worse than the first, pushing several working conditions back twenty years, and there is nothing in them to improve the attraction and retention of personnel.”

Offers from the employer negotiating committees

The employer negotiating committee for Francophone school service centers (CPNCF) and the employer negotiating committee for Anglophone school boards (CPNCA) are claiming to improve the attraction and retention of school support staff in the context of a labor shortage, promote the success of all students, and increase the flexibility and agility of administrative management, taking into account today’s realities.

But the solutions they are proposing will not achieve these targets, because the proposed measures do not address the demands of school support staff. The proposed solutions could even have the opposite effect.

Personal leaves of absence

Mr. Pronovost believes that “the fact that the employer can refuse a personal affairs leave risks being a prejudicial infringement.” A person who would like to attend the funeral of a close friend, for example, or accompany their child to a competition, could be refused.

A reduction in overtime

We are asking for positions with the greatest possible number of hours.  If overtime does not kick in until after 35 or 38:45 hours, managers will resort to posting small positions, then adding overtime at the regular rate. This will only increase the precariousness of our jobs.

Reduced access to positions whose hours have been increased

When a position whose hours have been increased is renewed the following year, it must be abolished and reposted, so that everyone can apply for it while respecting seniority. But the CPNCF wants the person whose hours have been increased to retain the position. Éric Pronovost says, “employees should be able to choose a position without being limited to vacant positions only.”

To make an informed choice, employees must consider several criteria and the number of hours is an essential factor since the vast majority of our positions are not 35 hours per week.

Increase the duration of the probation period

Currently, newly hired employees are able to apply for other positions with a greater number of hours.  The employer party wants to put an end to this practice. They claim that this prevents the employees from being properly assessed when there are already mechanisms in place to do so.

Mr. Pronovost says that “a person with a 15-hour position, for example, would have to wait for the equivalent of ninety (90) full-time days to apply for another position. At 15 hours per week, this would represent approximately two hundred and ten (210) days, or an entire school year!”

Improve the quality of school support staff jobs

The shortage of school support staff is a major issue for the members of the FPSS-CSQ. We are demanding very specific measures to improve the attraction and retention of personnel. “This will require quality jobs with full-time positions, an end to split shifts, the promotion of all school support staff jobs, and family-work balance.  Concrete action was needed by the government to resolve these problems and it has completely ignored them,” concludes Éric Pronovost.

More details
S12 – English School Boards: Info-nego S12 – second employer deposit
S13 – English School Boards: Info-nego S13 – second employer deposit
S3 – French School Boards: Info-Nego –  second employer deposit