NSTU Strike Action: Parent/Guardian Frequently Asked Questions
On November 28, the NSTU announced they are planning strike action beginning on Monday, December 5.
What will the strike action involve?
The NSTU has advised that teachers will continue to carry out their instructional duties in classrooms with students; focusing on teaching students in a safe learning environment, preparing and implementing lesson plans and maintaining contact with parents/guardians of students who are at risk and/or have special needs.
The NSTU has directed their members not to do specific tasks including, but not limited to:
- Teachers will arrive 20 minutes before school and leave 20 minutes after school
- Teachers will not communicate on school matters (including with parents) outside the instructional day
- Teachers will not collect money or organize fundraising activities with students
- Teachers will not enter information in PowerSchool or TIENET, including information regarding attendance and assessments
- Teachers will not fill out assessment and diagnostic instruments from external agencies unless required by law
- Teachers will not administer Department or Board assessments
- Teachers will not support or participate in extra-curricular activities
- Teachers will not update school or class websites or e-newsletters
- Teachers will not attend staff meetings, program planning or student success meetings
- Teachers will not participate in professional development provided by the Department or School Board
- Teachers will not provide extra help to students before, after school or over lunch
- Teachers will not accept or supervise student teachers
- School-based administrators will not participate in School Advisory Council or parent group meetings unless due to an appeal of student discipline
- School-based administrators will not conduct walk-throughs in classrooms for observation of teachers
- Teachers and school-based administrators will not attend meetings with Board and Department staff
When will the strike action begin?
The Nova Scotia Teachers Union has officially notified the Minister of Labour and Advanced Education that strike action will begin on Monday, December 5.
Who at my child’s school is included in the NSTU?
Teachers, guidance counsellors, principals and vice-principals are NSTU members as well as speech language pathologists, school psychologists, and school board consultants.
During the strike action, do students still attend school?
Yes, as long as classes continue and students are properly supervised throughout the school day, schools would remain open and students would attend classes.
Will there be supervision in place before and after school?
Student safety is always a priority. Supervision will be in place 20 minutes before school and 20 minutes after school. If you are driving your child to school, they cannot be dropped off more than 20 minutes before classes begin. If you are picking your child up at school, they must be picked up no later than 20 minutes after classes end.
Board-provided transportation/busing will continue as usual.
Will there be supervision at lunch time and recess?
Yes, supervision will be provided at lunch time and recess.
What happens to extra-curricular activities during the strike action?
As advised by the NSTU, teachers will not participate in any extra-curricular or voluntary activities.
Unfortunately, the list of directives from the NSTU to its members for activities from December 5th and onwards advises them not “to plan, participate in, supervise or facilitate extracurricular activities including holiday concerts whether scheduled during the school day or not.”
The Nova Scotia School Athletic Federation has stated that all interscholastic sport will be suspended during any strike action. This suspension of sport includes but is not limited to: games, including league (tournament, and exhibition), practices, training opportunities, and special events, without exception.
Can parents, guardians or volunteers help during the strike action?
Yes, parents, guardians and volunteers can continue to do what parents, guardians and volunteers have traditionally done. Policies related to Volunteers in Schools, Criminal Records Check and Child Abuse Registry are still enforced during any strike action.
What happens to programs run by those who aren’t NSTU members during the strike action?
SchoolsPlus, Early Years Centre (at Clark Rutherford Memorial School), after-school programs and others will continue to operate.
The Student Support Worker Program and Native Student Advisor Program will continue as usual.
Will the Breakfast Program at my child’s school be available during the strike action?
Breakfast programs may continue with the assistance of volunteers, and this will be a school-based decision.
Will community groups be able to continue to use the school during the strike action?
Yes, community groups that use school buildings after school hours will continue to have access to facilities.
Will the strike action impact the International Students Program (ISP)?
At this time it is not expected that the International Student Program (ISP) will be impacted by the strike action.
Will student co-op work placements be impacted by the strike action?
At this time, it is not expected that student co-op work placements during the school day will be impacted by the strike action. It is unknown now, whether placements outside of the school day will continue.
Will Virtual School be impacted by the strike action?
At this time, it is not expected that students enrolled in virtual high school will be impacted by the strike action.
You may have questions about how NSTU strike action impacts activities at your child’s school. Please continue to communicate with the principal at your child’s school with any questions that are school-specific.
We understand that any job action that impacts students can cause concerns for families. We will continue to make you aware of information as it becomes available. Please watch www.avrsb.ca and school websites for updates.