The Saskatchewan Teachers’ Federation and the Saskatchewan government were busy with duelling releases Friday morning, with the STF announcing further job action for next week, and the government announcing a funding agreement with the Saskatchewan School Boards Association.  

In the release announcing the further job action, the STF stated they will be withdrawing support for extracurricular activities on March 11th, 12th and 13th. As well, there will be a withdrawal of noon-hour supervision by the STF on March 11th in a number of school divisions. None of those divisions are located in the southeast.  

“While this week’s funding announcement is welcome, it does not guarantee ongoing, predictable and sustainable funding for education,” Samantha Becotte, the president of the STF, said in the release. “We have said on many occasions that a new collective agreement is within reach; government simply has to come to the bargaining table with a mandate to negotiate class size and complexity.” 

While the STF announced further job action, the provincial government announced they had reached a multi-year funding agreement with the Saskatchewan School Boards Association. The release stated the funding was part of the government’s commitment to ensure long-term and sustainable funding was in place.  

The agreement between the province and the SSBA will provide a minimum of $356.6 million per year over the next four years for classroom supports. This is said to include investments in youth mental health resources.  

"This agreement provides a written guarantee, signed by the government, for long-term funding for classroom supports - funding that will address important issues like classroom size and complexity," Education Minister Jeremy Cockrill said in the release. "Now that our government has made this unprecedented commitment in a signed agreement, it's time for the Saskatchewan Teachers Federation to end their job action and return to the bargaining table, so that students and teachers can return to the classroom." 

The announcement from the provincial government came two days after Premier Scott Moe announced there would be an additional $180 million for education included in the budget, bringing the total amount for school operating funding to $2.2 billion.  

In recent months, the STF has been calling for the provincial government to commit to funding for class size and class complexity, and have that commitment included in the collective bargaining agreement. The province has been steadfast that they would not include any commitment to the funding in the collective agreement.