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Strike averted at Montesorri school

Students kept in the classroom after Blaisdale, CUPE reach tentative deal

Unionized workers with Blaisdale Montesorri School, which has a campus in Oshawa, avoided a strike after coming to a tentative deal with the school. This was the first deal the union had reached with Blaisdale since voting to unionize in September 2015.

Unionized workers with Blaisdale Montesorri School, which has a campus in Oshawa, avoided a strike after coming to a tentative deal with the school. This was the first deal the union had reached with Blaisdale since voting to unionize in September 2015.

By Graeme McNaughton/The Oshawa Express

Students at Blaisdale Montesorri School will not be missing any classes after a deal was reached between the school and the union representing its workers.

The tentative deal, reached over the weekend, was the first between CUPE Local 5257 – which represents 127 employees at Blaisdale’s nine private campuses in Durham Region, including one in Oshawa – and management since workers voted to join the union in September 2015.

The union had initially set a strike deadline for midnight on Jan. 14.

At issue during negotiations were employee salaries, with CUPE saying that wages have been frozen for the past two years.

“The wage freeze issue is even more problematic for the 33% of our members who earn $13.50 an hour or less,” states Katie Massie, CUPE Local 5257’s president, in a news release issued prior to a deal being reached.

“We would rather be helping students in the schools than walking the picket lines, but we also need to make a decent living so we can continue to do what we do best – providing quality education to students whose families are paying significant tuition fees to attend Blaisdale.”

Union members are expected to review and vote on the tentative deal late next week.

A request for comment from Blaisdale Montesorri School was not returned to The Oshawa Express prior to press time.