Around OECTA

June 2023

From Your Local Unit

President's Message

Well. We’ve done it! We’ve made it to the end of school year 2022-2023.

Another in the books.

I wish that I could say it was a smooth ride, but in some areas, it has been anything but.

The transition to the new, old ‘normal’ has come with many challenges. Teachers continue to deal with Covid learning losses in class, lack of resources and training for curriculum updates (with more to come), escalating violence in schools, transitioning to a new operating system (Aspen), and a hazy labour landscape. All of which bring frustration to our jobs. The job of a teacher is becoming harder.

With that said, each of you has earned a much needed and well-deserved break for the summer. The work you have done this year does not go unnoticed. The commitment made by you to your jobs and your students shines through everyday. 

Here, in the office, the team works to support you in all your efforts. Although we aren’t always successful in resolving issues to our satisfaction, advocacy continues everyday. Our work continues on items such as violence reporting, staffing, support of teachers on leave, and counselling. 

The Provincial Bargaining Team has dates scheduled for the summer and are prepared to continue talks through July and August. We are somewhat hopeful that these talks will be fruitful as we move toward an agreement.

Contained in the Member Update (sent June 23rd) there was another mention of the Catholic Teachers member census being conducted by the OECTA Provincial Office. You should have received an email invitation reading “Pollara on behalf of OECTA” for this census. This is a monumental undertaking for our Association, which will provide a better understanding of our members and ensure that we continue to provide the resources and supports that best meet your needs. The unit strongly encourages all Catholic teachers to participate.

If you are a member in your first 10 years of teaching, then you are invited to attend OECTA’s Beginning Teachers Conference! Please consider this wonderful opportunity provided by the provincial office. The conference runs August 24-25 at Toronto’s Westin Harbour Castle hotel. There are still spots available. If you are interested, please contact me, 905-870-6483.

I would like to thank the office team; Alison, Paul, and Dina, as well as Kathryn, for their dedication and hard work throughout this year. Their commitment to the teachers of our unit is steadfast and inspiring. We are lucky to have each of them. I also want to thank the unit executive for their time and efforts this year. Their advocacy is crucial when bringing issues to the executive table. They also give their time, when no one seems to have enough, and I thank them for their work. As well, the various committee chairs and the members of our local committees. Teachers working for teachers, using their talents for the betterment of all. A sincere ‘thank you’.

I want to extend best wishes to those teachers who will be retiring from the profession, both at the end of June and those who moved on earlier this year. The difference you have made in the lives of your students and colleagues is immeasurable. You should be proud of the work you have done. Enjoy your retirement, you will be missed.

The unit office will be closed through the summer. Emails and voicemail will be monitored periodically. If there is an emergency, please contact the duty officer at the Provincial Office, at 1-800-268-7230. All non-pressing issues will be addressed when possible.

And with that, I want to wish each of you a happy and healthy summer. Spend time with family and close friends, travel if you’d like, enjoy the garden, enjoy the pool, or do nothing at all. Try to recharge and re energize. God bless.


Important Upcoming Dates

Know Your Contract

Last Pay Before Summer

A number of permanent teachers have reached out to ask about our most recent, and final pay of the school year. This is a great opportunity for a “know your contract” item.

Permanent teachers are paid on a “current” schedule (not on a delay like Occasional Teachers). Our salary is outlined in Article 5 of our local agreement (the back section). This article outlines that each pay is the equivalent of 1/26 of our salary and that our first pay is the first Thursday of the school year. For the 2022-2023 school year, our first pay was before Labour Day since we worked Thursday, September 1, 2022 as a PA Day.

Beginning with our first pay cheque, we are then paid every two weeks until our final pay in June. We received our final pay on Thursday, June 22, 2023 which is the equivalent of 5 pay cheques. All outstanding salary was paid to you on this final pay.

Since we started getting paid a week early in the fall, our final pay feels like it arrived a week “early” and leaves teachers feeling “short” a week pay in the summer, but this isn’t the case.

We do not have any PA Days prior to Labour Day and our first day of the school year is Tuesday, September 5, 2023. This means that our first pay cheque will be Thursday, September 7, 2023 (the first Thursday of the school year). Please budget accordingly.

To check your pay, take your salary and divide it by 26. This will give your gross salary (before deductions) and this should be the same on every paycheque if you are working a full year. You should always check to make sure this matches your grid rate. Then, take your gross pay and x5 which should match your final pay. If you have questions, there is a general email for payroll inquiries: If you are unable to resolve your questions, please forward your responses from payroll and we can attempt to offer assistance.

Occasional Teachers are paid on a two-week delay. You will have a pay on July 6, 2023 that covers days worked from June 11-24 and another pay on July 20, 2023 that covers days worked from June 25-29. For EI reporting purposes, the Board will report each day worked as an OT, as 8 hours on your Record of Employment.

Have a restful summer everyone!



1st Vice-President

Contract Manager/Lead Negotiator

From the Treasurer

Cashing Cheques

With so much personal banking now being done over our cell phones, increasingly cheques are inadvertently being cashed two (or more) times. This results in problems later on while reconciling the bank statement. To assist the unit in maintaining its books, members are asked to cash cheques ASAP '(and within 6 months)., Be sure to write "void" or "cancel" on remotely cashed cheques. 

2022-2023 Expenses and Mileage

All expenses and mileage claims (for union business) must be sent to the OECTA office by June 24th. Any expenses and mileage related to a specific committee must be signed for by the committee chairs before submitting to the office.

PD Funds Available

If you have taken a course which will help you to develop professionally, the unit may be able to help. PD funds (up to $250) are available for courses such as AQs, conferences, etc. Courses/Conferences must be completed by August 31 to qualify under this year's budgeted funds.  Courses/Conferences after August 31 may be claimed using next year's allocated funds.

Committee Budget Proposals

As this year draws to an end, we look ahead to the planning of next year. All Committee Chairpersons who wish to increase their respective committee's budget are asked to submit their proposed budget by Thursday, June 29, 2023, in order for the budget process to run its course, which begins in the summer. If you could highlight specific categories by expense, that would be helpful to the budget deliberations.   

Before we break for summer holidays, I would like to take this opportunity to invite all interested OECTA members to the Finance Committee Meeting on Wednesday, August 30, 2023. Further details will be sent out at a later date once the number of attendees are confirmed.

7 road trips in Ontario you have to take before summer ends

In Canada, we cherish the long-awaited summertime. Ontario has many experiences to offer, and with just a few short months of warm weather, road trips are essential. That's why we've compiled a list of the best road trips in Ontario to soak up the sights.


Member Opportunities

Local Opportunities

OECTA-HW Committees

As the heart and soul of OECTA-HW, our members possess the power to foster positive change within our Association through their involvement on the unit's various committees. Working together with fellow colleagues fosters a sense of camaraderie and unity, while providing a platform to collaborate, exchange ideas, and contribute to the collective wisdom of our profession. 

Our ultimate aim is to cultivate a vibrant community of professionals which harnesses the talents and collective knowledge of our members  for the betterment of our shared interest— a thriving publicly funded Catholic education system. 

Reasons to become involved:

We encourage all members to explore the various committees within our unit and find one that aligns with their interests and aspirations. Remember, your involvement matters. Together, we can shape the future of education, advocate for positive change, and create a system that truly supports both educators and students. Join the movement today and become an active participant in building a brighter future for our profession and the children we serve.

A Committee  For Everyone

*not seeking new members at this time

Provincial Association Opportunities

OECTA Summer Institutes 

Looking for something productive to do with your time this summer?  You're in luck!  Register today for these FREE learning opportunities and engage in meaningful dialogue with your colleagues from across the province. OECTA Summer Institutes are interactive and delivered virtually in one- or two-day seminars. Come away with practical resources and classroom ready supports for implementation in the coming school year. 

French as a Second Language (Grades 4-12)

August 9, 2023 (9:30am - 3:30pm)

Register Now

Relax About Reading (Kindergarten - Grade 2)

July 12-13, 2023  (9:30am - 3:30pm)

July 18-19, 2023 (9:30am - 3:30pm)

Register Now

Diving into Mathematics (Kindergarten to Grade 8)

August 1-2, 2023 (9:30am - 3:30pm)

August 22-23, 2023 (9:30am - 3:30pm)

Register Now

Summer Book Club

Looking to read a great book? Looking to connect with peers to chat about that great book? Sounds like you should join OECTA’s Summer Book Club.

Book Club participants will meet twice. Initially for a brief launch meeting prior to reading the text and then again for a book talk after reading. Participants are required to obtain their own copy of the book in advance of the launch meeting. Registration will open on April 3, 2023.


Catherine Hernandez

Love Lives Here

Amada Jetté Knox

Take me out to the Ballgame

In recognition of the amazing work of educators, the Toronto Blue Jays are once again offering Catholic teachers a 30% discount off select tickets for games through to June 30, 2023.

Offer Details:

From the Provincial Association

Links to Featured Articles

Inclusion Starts With YOU

by Caroline Chikoore

OECTA Springs Forward at AGM 2023

by Mei Seymour

Teachers, Social Media, and Freedom of Expression

by Bruno Muzzi

A Love Letter to Beginning Teachers

by Anthony Carabache


For the first time ever, the Association is launching a full-scale census of our membership. Simply put, we are seeking some simple and important – and confidential! – information from you and as many of our 45,000 Catholic teachers as possible, to provide a clearer picture of who our members are, so we can better reach and advocate for all Catholic teachers more effectively.

Your privacy throughout the census process is paramount, which is why we have engaged our long-standing partners at Pollara Strategic Insights, one of Canada’s leading research firms, to help conduct this census. Your information will be held in the strictest of confidence. No one associated with OECTA will be able to connect an individual’s responses with their identity – not the Provincial Executive, not Provincial Office staff, not unit presidents, and not members who complete the survey.

The ultimate success of any census depends on participation. Over the coming weeks and months, you are going to see a LOT of communications about this project. We will attempt to reach Catholic teachers to inform them of this opportunity in a variety of ways – from emails, to traditional “snail mail,” to peer-to-peer texting, and more. You will see advertisements posted in your schools, and we will attempt to encourage participation through a series of draws for exciting prizes – while always ensuring confidentiality.

The more Catholic teachers we can bring into this project, the better positioned our Association will be to further transform and improve what we do. So please, watch your email and for future updates, so you can do your part to make your voice heard, and be counted.

Little-known facts about seasonal property insurance

There’s nothing like a relaxing getaway at the cottage by the lake or the cabin in the woods. More than just bricks and mortar, your seasonal property is the keeper of cherished memories. Read on to learn some little-known facts about seasonal property insurance coverage.