10/22/2015 12:47 EDT | Updated 10/22/2016 01:12 EDT

Elementary teachers withdraw from extracurriculars amid stalled bargaining

TORONTO — Elementary teachers in Ontario are withdrawing from all voluntary extracurricular activities as of Wednesday.

The union representing the teachers says it's a way of putting pressure on the government and the Ontario Public School Boards' Association to return to the bargaining table.

The government has reached deals with the other major teachers' unions, but talks with the Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario are stalled.

Education Minister Liz Sandals said Wednesday that the government has been available to bargain and ready to go back to the table.

But the elementary teachers say the government and the school board association have "ignored all attempts" by the union to get them to return to bargaining, including an offer to refer one issue to binding arbitration.

The teachers were already staging a work-to-rule campaign that included no parent-teacher meetings and no class trips, but had warned they would expand it further if there was no bargaining progress.

The Canadian Press