Unless York strike ends soon, classes stop Dec. 15 - Macleans.ca

Unless York strike ends soon, classes stop Dec. 15

Fall term exams might be cancelled for nearly 50,000 students


York University says unless a four-week-long strike by teaching assistants is not over by next Monday, make-up classes and exams will be cancelled for the rest of the term.

Audio: Ontario Minister of Labour on York strike
Also read: Nervous York students demand gov’t action

Members of CUPE 3903 have been on strike since Nov. 6, keeping nearly 50,000 students out of class. According to York’s Executive Commitee of Senate, it will be impossible to reschedule classes and make time for exams before the holidays unless the dispute ends by Dec. 15.

“Unless a ratified settlement results in an end to the disruption… there will not be sufficient time to issue a notice of resumption and to conduct even a limited number of make up classes for courses that have been suspended,” reads a press release issued on the Executive Committee of Senate’s website.

Regardless of when the strike is resolved, no classes or exams will be held Dec. 20 to 23.

Negotiations between the union and York University administration broke down after only three days of negotiations. There are no additional meetings between the two groups scheduled at this time.

University of Toronto teaching assistants and lab demonstrators voted 63 per cent in favour of a strike, which was announced today. The good news for U of T students is that the union will not be able to legally strike until January, meaning all classes and exams will proceed as normal in the fall term.


Unless York strike ends soon, classes stop Dec. 15

  1. Congratulations CUPE! Way to f*ck 50,000 lives up!

  2. Congratulations, York Administration! Way to f*ck 50,000 lives up!

    (Note the 50,000 lives includes CUPE members, of course!)

  3. What happens to year long courses?

  4. Pingback: No end to York strike as government holiday begins : Macleans OnCampus

  5. I think there’s a minimum number of weeks required for any university level courses. If the strike extends long enough to prevent that minimum, there is no choice but to close the university. Other universities who have been closed for extended periods got more liberal with distance and transfer courses, but there is almost always irreversible damage.

    And I think there’s enough blame to go around. It’s more like playing Russian roulette… with a bullet in every chamber!

  6. As a Glendon Student (for those not familiar its the bilingual campus plus many other things for York university) I started this year very excited. Since the strike started, I was very hopeful that a quick resolution could be reached.

    At this point…I blame both sides equally. The university will not refund my money (or anyone else’s) and they are who I have a ‘contract’ with, as in tuition fees and such. They will keep our tuition, we will not have attended, and they will blame the union for it. The union, well, its been said a million times, but it IS a right to strike, yet as much as I want to support them, I truly believe things could have been handled differently. Saying that though, neither sides are truly putting any of the students first.

    I just want my money back. ……and maybe to erase this frustration from my memory, because as a first year student, this has gone beyond colouring my view of the ‘real’ world. I will be cancelling all of my winter semester courses, and will be going back to work to start to save money for next year, but I cannot say it will be York that I will be attending.

  7. Wake up grad student CUPE members! You have the power to pressure the union to ratify a settlement. While I blame both the university administration and the union for creating this mess, both sides are taking advantage of grad student apathy. Only 22% of CUPE 3903 membership showed up for the stike vote on Nov. 5th and as a result all York students (grads & undergrads) may lose their academic year if the strike is allowed to drag on. Make no mistake, grad students are being used as pawns in a power struggle between the administration and the union. Neither side has students’ interests at heart. So fight back and insist that classes resume ASAP!

  8. Screw it. I’m getting a job.
    I want my $ back or I’m suing.

  9. i wouldnt have minded if it was a two week strike but now… wow i question if i am a uni student… it’s funny because science and engineering TAs didnt get to vote…

  10. It is my first year in York, and I really think that the both the union and University is just screwing everyone’s life. I worked so hard to get a high average too! I feel sorry for the stores that paid rent, students in residence, and international students most though! Hope they reconsider their positions for the better of the students and resolve this strike.

  11. university is a business now. it’s all about money, not knowledge.

    What a world.

  12. I’m also a Glendon Student, and I wish that I could cancel my winter courses like some people, but this is my final year and like many other graduating students I’m more worried about what will happen if my year, or even a semester is lost. I came home after a week of strike thinking that it wouldn’t last much longer, but now I’m still home. There was no trying to find a job because we didn’t know if it we’d have to quit the next day to go back to school.
    Loosing the money would suck, and I agree that if that happens we will have to do something about it, but I also know that the graduating students, such as myself, are extremely concerned about loosing the year or even a semester. This would mean that we would not graduate this year as planned. The university would be forcing us to take another year/semester which I think is completely unfair. It completely disrupts our lives and may force us to loose money as many of us are applying to grad programs. Even if we get to go back and finish out the year, this has already screwed things up for students who planned on starting a grad-program in May as our year most likely will not be done by then. How are we supposed to be accepted to grad-programs when we cannot submit transcripts, or get references from professors?

  13. thanks alot cupe. it was a fantastic FIRST SECOND YEAR.

  14. you guys are gonna get it, watch.

  15. job security I understand–but from 9.25% for 3 years to 11% over 2 years is outrageous. York University should at least compensate the students by providing them a spring semester at no charge..or refund at least half the money lost. It is really a shame how universities are taking advantage over these students who just come for an education. Both sides can go F**k themselves.

  16. York is saving quite a bit of money I would think by not having to pay full wages to those on strike. Maybe they can pass those savings on to the students.

  17. @Danny V

    Actually, because the strikers are paid by the course, they will receive their pay after the strike.

    If tenured full-time faculty were on strike, there would be savings because they are paid a salary, not piece-rate.

  18. Stop meddling with students lives. University is a scandal, they dont care about us the students, especially York University.