STF begins member consultation about use of binding arbitration, schedules Friday press conference

Prince Albert teachers hold up signs and wave to passing drivers as the first day of the Saskatchewan Teachers’ Federation rotating strike hit Prince Albert on Feb. 1, 2024. -- Jason Kerr/Daily Herald

Saskatchewan teachers will be giving their thoughts on the use of binding arbitration after the Saskatchewan Teachers’ Federation (STF) began a member consultation process on Wednesday.

The STF said the consultation will focus on two possible paths forward, one of which would see binding arbitration used to resolve outstanding issues that have prevented the teachers and the provincial government from agreeing on a new collective bargaining agreement.

The STF added that additional information will not be available while the consultation process continues. The organization has planned a media availability for Friday afternoon.

The STF bargaining committee proposed binding arbitration on classroom size and complexity in March, but he Government-Trustee Bargaining Committee (GTBC) rejected the offer.

The GTBC offered binding arbitration on the issues of wages and the accountability framework on June 5 after a bargaining impasse was declared. The STF bargaining committee rejected the proposal.

On June 8, the GTBC’s offer was revised to include a class complexity accountability framework as well as wages, a position that aligns with the STF bargaining committee position on classroom complexity.