The battle between the Ontario government and the teachers' unions will extend beyond teacher layoffs says Glen Hodgson, president of the Ontario Secondary School Teachers Federation District 4.
To start, it will harm young teachers trying to get their first job. Some wait years on a supply list to get their chance.
"There won't be a supply list," he told BayToday. "Contractually we do have clauses that indicate redundant teachers get the first opportunity for long term occasional jobs and obviously will have recall rights and will be available for that supply list."
Hodgson says that makes him very concerned for his occasional teacher members who will lose their jobs.
"They will be in great peril," he says.
And it extends further Hodgson contends.
"Because of where we live I can't imagine what it is like to be a candidate in a teacher education facility right now when you're told there will be no hiring for the next four years, so they are essentially wiping out, in my opinion, an entire part of Nipissing University's programming. Why would you go to teachers college right now if you're told there is a hiring freeze and they won't be hiring, and they're declaring a bunch of teachers redundant?
"Obviously I'm very concerned about my members and getting their jobs back but we can't lose sight of the fact that even if those teachers are all recalled, which they keep saying they're going to be, we have to consider the fact they're only being recalled because of that special funding. The actual changes are still coming into effect. And those changes are going to be very bad for the Near North. We can't lose sight of that."
Hodgson also sees challenges for the local economy.
"Let's be honest. If I'm a small business owner I would be concerned because these are decent paying jobs that potentially are leaving our communities. That will have an economic impact. Even if they hire these people back I don't think they'll be making any big plans to spend money any time in the near future so that will have an impact on our economy and I, as a local business owner would be concerned about the lack of certainty for decent jobs in my community, especially in the smaller communities."