Negotiations between the Association’s Central Table Bargaining Committee (CTBC) and the Teachers’ Employer Bargaining Authority (TEBA) continue as the parties attempt to come to agreement on which collective bargaining matters may be negotiated at a central table and which matters may be bargained at local tables with school boards. TEBA includes representatives of government and representatives of school boards.
“We continue to make progress, and we reached agreement on the placement of a number of matters. These meetings have been very productive,” CTBC chair Greg Jeffery said in a May 19 post to his bargaining blog.
Jeffery also noted in his blog post that TEBA is approaching this round of negotiations from a cost-containment perspective, given the current state of Alberta’s economy.
“That is to be expected from an employer’s organization during times like these,” said Jeffery. “However, it poses increased challenges for bargaining.”
Further meeting dates are scheduled, and the parties will continue to discuss the unassigned matters. If there is no agreement on the complete lists of matters by the end of May, either party may request that an arbitrator decide the placement of the remaining matters.
The current process for bargaining collective agreements with teachers is set out in the Public Education Collective Bargaining Act passed last December. The act establishes a three-phase process whereby central bargaining first determines the lists of matters that may be discussed centrally and locally. The second phase includes central negotiations on those matters assigned to the central table, followed by the third phase, in which local negotiations between Association bargaining units and school boards are conducted on the remaining matters. ❚