Ontario French teachers ratify new deal extending contracts to 2019

Ontario's French teachers have ratified a two-year deal that would extend their current contracts through to 2019.

They join the Canadian Union of Public Employees in ratifying central deals that allow the Liberal government to avoid contentious bargaining ahead of next year's provincial election.

Radio-Canada has reported that the French teachers' deal will see them get four per cent in raises over the two years as well as a 0.5-per-cent lump sum payment.

Those are the same compensation terms as in the CUPE deal for 55,000 education workers and that have been offered to English Catholic teachers and elementary teachers.

CUPE workers ratified their two-year contract extension this week and it also included a commitment from the government to invest $115 million over the two years in special education and hiring office, clerical, technical and custodial workers.

The last round of negotiations with the education unions were contentious, with support staff and elementary teachers staging work-to-rule campaigns and the government threatening to dock their pay. Securing contract extensions past the June 2018 election would ensure the government doesn't have to contend with such job action in the lead-up to the vote.