Oct 132011

Dear ESTA Members,

On August 31, September 20 and September 26, 2011 the members of your negotiating team met with our counterparts from the Eastern Shores School Board to carry out local negotiations.

The members of the ESTA team were Gordon Dell, 2nd Member-at-Large; Nelson Roussy, 1st Vice-President; and Ray Venables, President.

The members of the ESSB team were Howard Miller, Assistant Director General, and Suzanne Ward, Director of Finance. (At times, Ken Ward and Louise Jones also participated in the discussion.)

Negotiations went exceptionally well. All participants conducted themselves in a cordial, calm, professional, business-like manner. This was my first experience with Local Negotiations and I was impressed that it went so smoothly. A spirit of cooperation prevailed.

Despite the fact that the Provincial Collective Agreement had not yet been translated into English, we were able to meet early and adopt a short timeline to mirror the provincial negotiations that took place in the Spring of 2011.

For our own part, our demands were not great — a reflection of our general satisfaction with our current Local Agreement. ESTA’s demands were formulated through consultation with the membership in May 2011. Following that, the ESTA negotiating team met on June 2, 2011 to sift through our current Agreement and to draft our demands. I believe that we have been successful in achieving the changes we sought and in preserving the rights won for us by our predecessors during past negotiations.

At the conclusion of our negotiations, ESSB and ESTA have reached an Agreement in Principle. This means that both parties have agreed to abide by and implement the new Agreement pending ratification by their memberships. This document is available through your school/centre’s union delegate and should be posted on your union bulletin board (an electronic version is available upon request).

Except for revisions of dates, names, and general “tidying up”, the other articles, clauses, and letters of agreement contained in our Local Agreement and not mentioned in the summary document remain unchanged.

Here is the timeline for conducting the general vote on the Agreement in Principle: October 11 – 21: Members should review the Agreement in Principle. Please ask your union delegate if you need any clarification. October 24 – 27: Vote is conducted in the schools. Your union delegate will determine the best time and date for your school/centre. Week of October 31, 2011: Results of the General Vote.

On October 6, the ESTA Executive met to review the Agreement in Principle. On behalf of the negotiating team and the ESTA Executive, we urge the members of ESTA to endorse the Agreement in Principle.


Ray Venables