Annual Business Plan 2018-2019 to 2020-2021

Provincial Schools Authority

Contents

Mandate
Strategic Overview
PSA Environment
Overview of Activities
PSA Members and Budget
Risk Management
Performance Measure

This is the annual business plan for 2018-2019 to 2020-2021 for the Provincial Schools Authority, an agency of the Ministry of Education.

Mandate

The Provincial Schools Authority (PSA) was established as an agency of the Ministry of Education (EDU) in 1975 under the Provincial Schools Negotiations Act. The PSA is the employer of record for teachers employed in provincially operated schools. These employees are represented by the Provincial Schools Authority Teachers (PSAT), which is a district of the Ontario Secondary School Teachers' Federation (OSSTF).

The PSA is also the employer of record for principals and vice principals in provincially operated schools. The principals and vice principals are not represented by a union and do not have a collective agreement. The PSA reviews and advises on the terms and conditions of employment for principals and vice-principals. Since 2014 the PSA has adopted the terms and conditions centrally negotiated by the Trustees' / School Board Associations, the Principals' and Vice Principals' Associations and the Crown for the principals and vice principals to ensure consistency with the education sector.

Strategic Overview

The PSA aims to perform its role as the employer of record for teachers, principals and vice principals working in provincially operated schools in a fair, equitable and efficient manner and in compliance with the Provincial Schools Authority Act (formerly the Provincial Schools Negotiations Act).

All matters relating to administration in respect of teachers are the responsibility of the Deputy Minister of Education who delegates this duty to the Executive Director of the Provincial and Demonstration Schools Branch (PDSB). The Executive Director of PDSB oversees and is responsible for the day to day operations including all issues related to teachers and students. The Executive Director works in cooperation with the PSA Chair to ensure effective and efficient fulfillment of the PSA's mandate.

As the employer of record, the PSA ratifies the collective agreements between the parties during central and local negotiations in accordance with the School Boards Collective Bargaining Act 2014 (SBCBA). The SBCBA establishes a system of collective bargaining in the Ontario education sector and explains the role of the PSA and the Ministry of Education during collective bargaining with teachers.

The PSA operates pursuant to the terms of the 2017-2019 PSAT Collective Agreement which was extended to August 2019.

The PSA enlists the assistance of the Treasury Board Secretariat, Centre for Public Sector Labour Relations and Compensation as needed on matters related to collective bargaining and administration of the PSAT collective agreement.

PSA Environment

The PSA is the employer of record for teachers, principals and vice-principals who work in provincially operated schools. In 2017-2018, there are approximately 204 teachers and approximately 14 principals and vice-principals, as of December 2017.

The PSA is the employer of record for teachers who teach students who are part of the public education system but for various reasons or needs, cannot be accommodated in a District School Board program. The vast majority of these teachers are employed in schools directly operated by the Ministry of Education. These schools provide direct education to elementary and secondary school students who are Deaf, hard of hearing, blind, low vision, deafblind, and to students who have severe learning disabilities. The schools also provide outreach services and teacher in-service for school boards.

The PSA is also the employer of record for teachers who work in the schools operated by the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services teaching students who cannot attend regular schools.

Overview of Activities

The PSA addresses issues related to the terms and conditions of employment of teachers, principals and vice principals employed in provincially operated schools. Activities include:

  • Receiving and deciding on leave applications from teachers, principals and vice-principals in a reasonable and efficient manner and in compliance with the terms of employment for each group;
  • Hearing PSAT grievances at second step in a timely manner; and
  • Resolving grievances in a fair and equitable manner and in compliance with the PSAT collective agreement.
  • Ratifying agreements reached between the parties at the central and local negotiations tables.

During PSA meetings, members discuss issues regarding the employment of teachers, principals and vice-principals working in provincially operated schools.

  • The PSA aims to meet two to three times a year during a normal operating cycle to discuss issues raised by PSAT. The PSA also aims to hold joint meetings with PSAT executives (two to three times per year) so that updates can be provided and that items can be discussed and addressed in a timely manner. There are times during collective bargaining when these meetings may be put on hold.

PSA Members and Budget

The PSA consists of a Board comprised of five (5) members: a chair, a vice chair and three additional members. This agency has no permanent staff. Louise Sirisko was appointed chair on March 3, 2016. However, the position of chair became vacant in January 2018 due to Ms. Sirisko starting a new position outside of the Ontario Public Service. The agency and the Ministry of Education are working towards filling the vacant Chair and member positions.

Below is a list of appointees:

Position Incumbent Appointment Date Expiry Date of Appointment
Chair Currently vacant
Vice Chair Demetra Saldaris March 3, 2016 March 3, 2019
Member Anita Bennett March 8, 2009 March 18, 2020
Member Terry Angle November 20, 1996 March 18, 2020
Member Currently vacant

The PSA budget is provided by the Provincial and Demonstration Schools Branch of the Ministry of Education from its base budget. The allocation is $30,100 annually. These funds are reserved for:

  • Travel expenses incurred by members coming to meetings or hearing grievances;
  • Services (including interpreters and translators. Provincial schools have both English and French language schools); and
  • Costs associated with the administration of the collective agreement including arbitration hearings.

Risk Management

  • There are two vacant positions on the PSA including the Chair and one member position. There is a low risk that the continued vacancies may result in fewer PSA meetings due to the interest in having the Chair at the meetings. A full member complement provides a diverse range of opinions and analysis which is beneficial to the group.
  • The agency and the Ministry of Education are taking immediate steps to fill the vacant Chair position, followed by filling the member position.
  • It is anticipated that collective bargaining for the PSAT Collective Agreement will take place in 2019-2020 and as such the PSA will require timely, accurate advice on labour relations and negotiations issues.

Performance Measure

The PSA aims to meet two to three times a year during a normal operating cycle to discuss issues raised by PSAT. The PSA will continue to strive to maintain positive relationships with all labour organizations.