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A publication of the Ontario Catholic School Trustees’ Association
Promoting and Protecting Catholic Education

Inside this Issue:

Implementation Cost Estimate (ICE) Working Group

Bob Murray, Director, Legislative and Political Affairs

The Ministry of Education recently formed the Implementation Cost Estimate (ICE) Working Group which is composed of Ministry staff, and representatives from CODE, COSBO and trustee associations. The working group met on June 24, 2013 to discuss cost pressures for school boards that have resulted from the most recent memoranda of understanding (MoUs). Recently we shared with Boards a memorandum from Gabriel Sekaly, Assistant Deputy Minister, Business and Finance Division, providing details regarding additional cost pressures that were discussed during our meeting. They include:

  1. Maternity Leave: The Ministry is prepared to consider providing additional support to reflect the increase in maternity leave from 6 weeks to 8 weeks.  Additional data from boards related to the incremental costs anticipated based on historical maternity leave data will need to be analyzed before any funding determination can be made.
  2. Inflationary Pressures: For inflationary pressures related to benefits, boards were asked to provide OCSTA with the inflationary % increase that each board experienced on benefit plans for 2011-12 & 2012-13 by employee group (if available)or in total.
  3. Attendance Recognition: The Ministry is providing assurance that the government is prepared to provide up to $30M in 2013-14 to cover any incremental costs relating to any payments made to eligible staff that use less than 6 sick days. This is based on existing data that shows that approximately 50% of staff used less than 6 days in the past.  This figure, and any funding considered, would need to be reconciled with actual experience – particularly if the average number of sick days taken drops as a result of this incentive as that would create additional savings. A mechanism will be put in place through the 2013-14 fiscal year to collect information regarding the number and value of payments made by your school board related to the attendance recognition program.
  4. Sick Leave Usage: For sick leave usage above trend, boards would provide the Ministry with data tracking sick leave utilization from 2009-10 on.  Once that data is available, including analysis of trends, the ICE working group would have further discussion. The Ministry also agreed that sick leave utilization would need to continue to be tracked by boards over time as part of good attendance management processes. OCSTA is currently in discussions with SBCI to provide sick leave utilization data for a significant sample of school boards for the years 2010-11, 2011-12 and 2012-13. This same data will be compiled on a go forward basis.

As per ADM Sekaly’s memo, the receipt of funding “is conditional upon the Board fulfilling the MOU requirements”.

To support members in addressing this issue, OCSTA’s President, Marino Gazzola, hosted a teleconference for Chairs and Directors of Education on July 17. A report from that meeting was sent to all Board Chairs and Directors of Education.

For more information please contact your local Board Chair or Bob Murray, Director, Legislative and Political Affairs, ext. 224.

Provincial By-elections

Bob Murray, Director, Legislative and Political Affairs

A provincial by-election is scheduled for August 1, 2013.  There are 5 ridings being contested during this by-election that will not fundamentally alter the current status of a Liberal minority government, but will undoubtedly impact the province’s political processes.

By-elections are being held in:

•    London-West (London DCSB);
•    Windsor-Tecumseh (Windsor-Essex CDSB);
•    Ottawa South (Ottawa CDSB);
•    Scarborough-Guildwood (Toronto CDSB) and;
•    Etobicoke-Lakeshore (Toronto CDSB).

Following is the list of Candidates (and websites) by riding:

London West
Lib Candidate: Ken Coran www.votekencoran.ca
PC Candidate: Ali Chahbar www.londonwest.ontariopc.com/Homepage
NDP Candidate: Peggy Sattler www.peggysattler.ca
Green Party Candidate: Gary Brown www.gpo.ca/riding/45/candidate
Windsor – Tecumseh
Lib Candidate: Jeewen Gill  www.jeewengill.ca/Home
PC candidate: Robert de Verteuil  www.windsortecumseh.ontariopc.com/Homepage
NDP Candidate: Percy Hadfield  www.percyhatfield.ca/
Green Party Candidate: Adam Wright  www.gpo.ca/riding/102/candidate
Ottawa South
Lib Candidate: John Fraser  www.votejohnfraser.ca/Home
PC Candidate: Matt Young  www.ottawasouth.ontariopc.com/Homepage
NDP Candidate: Bronwyn Funiciello  www.bronwynfuniciello.ca
Green Party Candidate: Taylor Howarth  www.gpo.ca/riding/64/candidate-0
Scarborough-Guildwood
Lib Candidate: Mitzie Hunter  www.votehunter.ca/Home
PC Candidate: Ken Kirupa  www.scarboroughguildwood.ontariopc.com/Homepage
NDP Candidate: Adam Giambrone  www.adamgiambrone.ca
Green Party Candidate: Nick Leeson  www.gpo.ca/riding/82/candidate
Etobicoke-Lakeshore
Lib Candidate: Peter Milczyn  www.votepetermilczyn.ca
PC Candidate: Doug Holyday  www.etobicokelakeshore.ontariopc.com/Homepage
NDP Candidate: P.C. (Pak-Cheong) Choo  www.pcchoo.ca

 

While there is a very short campaign period in each of these by-elections, we strongly encourage boards to make contact with each candidate and ensure their support for publicly funded Catholic education.  Key messaging for trustees has been provided to each board – messaging is also available in the Members’ Area of the website.

After the by-election results are announced, it is advised that those boards that will have new MPPs immediately make contact and request a meeting to begin fostering a strong and positive local relationship.

For more information, please contact Bob Murrary, Director, Legislative and Political Affairs, ext. 224.

OCSTA Fall Regional Meetings

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Each year OCSTA hosts a series of meetings for trustees in regions across the province.  The purpose of these meetings is to provide professional and faith development opportunities at the local level and to offer an opportunity for trustees to explore regional issues with their peers from across the region.

These regional sessions also offer an opportunity for OCSTA members to engage OCSTA’s President and staff in discussions about provincial issues and local priorities.

Please use the following information to reserve the dates now for the regional meeting in your area.

North West Meeting: Friday, September 20, 3-9 p.m. at the Da Vinci Centre, 340 Waterloo St. South, Thunder Bay
Hosted by the Thunder Bay Diocesan Catholic School Trustees’ Conference

West Meeting: Wednesday, September 25, 10 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. at the Huron Perth CDSB, 87 Mill St., Dublin
Hosted by the Huron Perth CDSB

North East Meeting: Saturday, September 28, 10 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. at the Holiday Inn Express Suites, 30 Algonquin Blvd. W., Timmins
Hosted by the Northeastern CDSB

Central Meeting: Tuesday, October 1, 10 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. at the Durham CDSB, 650 Rossland Rd. West., Oshawa
Hosted by the Durham CDSB

East Meeting: Thursday, October 3, 10 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. at the Ottawa CSB, 570 West Hunt Club Rd., Nepean
Hosted by the Ottawa CSB

If you are unable to attend the meeting in your area you may register for a meeting in any of the other areas if more convenient.

Fall Regional Meetings Online Registration Form

View Meeting Agenda

Across the Province

There is so much happening at our Catholic school boards across the province and to help keep trustees’ updated on the success and initiatives that are making a difference in our Catholic school system and province we invite all to visit our Good News Blog and the Faith in Our Future campaign website – www.faithinourfuture.ca.